Not many alums make their living on the Cuyahoga River taking in unrivaled views of downtown. But Alyssa Trebilcock ’10 does. She coaches beginners and the competitive juniors rowing team at competitive juniors rowing team at The Foundry, a rowing and sailing center in The Flats for students in Grades 6-12.
“When we were growing up, we didn’t know about rowing,” Trebilcock says. “This really opens the door for kids to think ‘I can do that in high school’ or ‘That’s an option for me.’ It’s definitely an exciting addition to our city.”
Trebilcock, who competed in the NCAA Rowing Championships all four years as a student at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, has been involved with The Foundry since it was established in 2015. Being situated on the Cuyahoga has exposed her to an “untouched” Cleveland, one of the region’s most vital natural resources.
“Since I’ve been coaching, the amount of water sports and recreation on the river has really increased,” Trebilcock notes. “There are a lot more people on the river than ever before, and our athletes have noticed that too. It’s exciting.”
Trebilcock can push the competitive juniors out of their comfort zone one day or work on an introductory level with novices the next. Some of her students have never played sports before; others have earned college scholarships and compete in national championships. “Whatever level you’re at, we’re going to help you get better,” she says.
As part of her job, Trebilcock also participates in outreach efforts at schools and community centers around Cleveland, teaching rowing classes, getting people out on the water and advocating for the sport.
When a neighbor encouraged Trebilcock and her two brothers, Michael ’12 and Kristian, to take up rowing, the siblings were happy to give it a try. It introduced them to new friends from all over the city and a passion for the sport.
“There’s an attitude among us now that we’re in control of our own destiny,” Trebilcock says. “We’re leading healthier lives and we’re invested in what we’re doing.”
At Gilmour, Trebilcock played ice hockey, lacrosse and soccer. Hockey instilled in her a sense of teamwork, time management and discipline that’s vital to her success today.
“The amount of time and travel that it took was intense,” she says. “By the time I went to college I knew I was capable of being both a committed student and a dedicated athlete.”