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Coaching Certificate Application
The coaching academy aims to assist students and student-athletes who are interested in the various opportunities related to the coaching profession and youth development. Our certificate program is designed to help students gain coaching experience while supporting them through the student coaching experience.
Are you interested in joining our network of coaches? Sign up today!
West Campus Performance Center
447 Tom Chandler Drive – 4259 TAMU
College Station, TX 77843-4243
Our Coaching Staff
Dr. Mike Thornton ’07
Director – Texas A&M Thornton-McFerrin Coaching Academy
Dr. Michael “Coach” Thornton is the Director of the Texas A&M Thornton-McFerrin Coaching Academy, a Clinical Assistant Professor in Kinesiology and Sports Management, and continues to serve as the President/Executive Director of Read Youth Charities and the Deerfoot Youth Camp. Additionally, he is an official for division 1 men’s basketball. Coach Thornton serves on various department, college, and Texas A&M committees as well as advising the Women’s Basketball Club Team and the Student Coaches Association.
Kelli Campbell ’99
Program Manager – Texas A&M Thornton-McFerrin Coaching Academy
Kelli Campbell attended Texas A&M University from 1995-2000 and was a 4-year letterman on the track and field team. She also actively volunteered in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and Aggie Athletes Involved. As a junior, Kelli entered the Professional Program in Accounting (PPA), obtained a Bachelors of Business Administration in Accounting, and Master of Science in Management Information Systems. After graduating in 2000, she worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) then transitioned to Fortune 500 company, Temple-Inland, Inc. based out of Austin, Texas. While at Temple-Inland, she was an internal auditor and eventually became the Enterprise Change Management (ECM) Lead within the IT division.
Director of Program Development
Rashard Thurston brings a wealth of experience as an educator, coach, and administrator. He has over 20 years of coaching and teaching experience. Rashard is responsible for the development of coaching academy outreach programs, certifications, curriculum for coaching leadership and retention programs. In addition, he advises students, provides mentorship and actively recruits students to the Thornton-McFerrin Coaching Academy (TMCA)
Robert “Nate” Young
Veterans Coaching Program Coordinator
After having served over 20 years in the U.S. Army with a majority of his career as a Special Forces Soldier “Green Beret”, Nate Young began pursuing a career as a strength and conditioning coach. He is now attending Texas A&M University to pursue a Master’s in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Sports Physiology. Nate also founded and coordinates the Veterans Coaching Program at the Texas A&M Thornton-McFerrin Coaching Academy.
Social Media Officer, Texas A&M Student Coaches Association
Parker Clay is a graduate student at Texas A&M University and is currently in her first year of the Sports Physiology masters program. In Spring 2022, Parker completed her Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology degree with minors in Coaching and Sport Management. Prior to graduation, she was a captain on the track and field team where she competed in the throwing events.
alyssa thomas ’25
Alyssa Thomas is a Texas A&M sophomore pursuing her Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology. Alyssa is a thrower on the track and field team and specializes in the discus. She also has experience in the shot put, javelin, and hammer throw. Alyssa made the 2022 Outdoor SouthEast Conference team where she competed in the discus. She is currently interning at the Thornton-McFerrin Coaching Academy (TMCA) and is helping coach the City of Bryan Thunderbolts Track Club for athletes ages nine through seventeen.
Our Coaching Partners
Master Strength & Conditioning Coach
Monty Gibson is entering his 4th season in the NFL with the Cleveland Browns, following over 25 years of coaching for Texas A&M University, Fort Stockton, & Bryan ISD in Texas.
Coach and Professor
Marlene Dixon’s research focuses on relationships between sport and life quality. Her work endeavors to identify how sport can be designed, managed, and marketed to promote and enhance the life quality of individuals, families, and communities.
Counseling and Sport Psychology Coach
Ryan Pittsinger, PhD joined the Athletics Department in 2016 and serves as Assistant Athletic Director and Director of Counseling and Sport Psychology Services. He serves the needs of all student-athletes by honoring the unique demands and experiences they are often faced with and striving to offer support in meaningful ways that is tailored to each student-athlete’s specific needs.
Bio coming soon!
Conflict Resolution Coach
Dr. Guinn is the CEO of RRG Consulting. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Business Management and his Masters in Conflict Resolution from Abilene Christian University in four years.
Jessica Beard has been participating in the World Championships in Athletics, winning gold in her relay team. She was inducted into the 2017 Texas A&M Athletics Hall of Fame.