“We foster their passion for the game, and set them up to be athletes for life. They don’t get burnt out because they have a better understanding of how to fuel and condition themselves, as well as a deeper love for the game and the team. These student-athletes go on to be anything from international players, doctors, and successful businesswomen, to teachers.”
In her 37 years in Chapel Hill, Karen Shelton has built one of the country’s finest field hockey programs at the University of North Carolina. Shelton took over as the Tar Heels’ head coach in 1981 and since then has led UNC to national prominence in the form of seven NCAA Championships, 11 NCAA runner-up finishes and 36 winning seasons. Following the 2017 season, Shelton ranks second in NCAA history in career wins.
But most importantly, Shelton stresses a winning culture on and off the field.
This is story number 211 in the Carolina Stories 225th Anniversary Edition magazine.