Melissa Hershey begins her fourth season as the diving coach at Siena College after years of both competing and coaching at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where she was a standout on the swimming and diving team for four years.
"We are extremely happy to have Melissa on board," swimming coach Greg Brown said upon her hiring. "Melissa brings a plethora of coaching experience and knowledge to the table and there is no doubt that she will have our players ready to go by the first meet."
The diving team has seen its numbers grow the past four years under Hershey and has continued to show marked improvement, highlighted with numerous top finishes in 1 and 3M diving events during the 2008-09 season. Additionally, freshman Elizabeth Rice became the first Siena diver in program history to be named a MAAC Diver of the Week, an honor she earned twice during the 2008-09 season under Hershey's tutelage.
Hershey, a native of Needham, Mass. was a NYSWCAA All-Academic Team selection from 2003-2005 at RPI. She was also a four-time All-American, a 2005 ESPN Academic All-District Honors Nominee, RPI's Swimming and Diving MVP in 2005, Diver of the Year in 2003 and 2004 and was the swimming and diving Rookie of the Year in 2002. Hershey also led RPI to the 2005 NYSWCAA Conference Championships, where she captured the gold medal. In 2003 and 2004, RPI won the silver medal.
Prior to her appointment at Siena, Hershey served as assistant diving coach at RPI. Her responsibilities ranged from planning and running practices and coaching divers on their training trips. Hershey's coaching tenure at RPI began almost immediately following the conclusion of her collegiate playing career in August 2005.
As a student athlete, Hershey was a member of the Student Athletic Advisory Committee (SAAC) and was the co-captain of RPI's swimming and diving team.
Hershey graduated from RPI in 2005 with a dual degree in Mechanical Engineering and Science Technology & Society Studies with a concentration in design.
A native of Needham, Mass, Hershey currently resides in nearby Troy, N.Y.