Serving Up a Passion: Trinity Swift's Rally for Education, Tennis, and Empowering Young Minds
If you were to find the perfect coaching recruit for USTA Mid-Atlantic’s Girls Rule the Court™ (GRTC) program, you would look no further than Trinity Swift. Given her affinity for education, community outreach, and love of tennis, Trinity is making an impact in her first year as a coach with GRTC in Louisa County, Virginia.
Trinity grew up in Charlottesville, VA., but later moved to Waynesboro during middle school. She graduated from Wilson Memorial High School and attended VCU, where she initially planned to become a pediatrician. However, after attending a panel discussion on the medical field, she decided to pursue a career in education instead. She obtained her master's degree in education and taught elementary school for five and a half years at a public charter school in Richmond. She then transitioned to working as an education coordinator at the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia for a year before joining an organ procurement organization (OPO) as a community education coordinator. In her current role, she talks to people about becoming organ donors and the organ donor process, combining her passion for education and helping the community.
Tennis has played a significant role in Trinity's life. She first started playing at a young age and developed a love for the sport, inspired by players like Serena and Venus Williams. “My love of tennis started at the Boys and Girls Club in Charlottesville on Cherry Avenue. As my siblings and I got restless by staying at Grandma’s house during the summers, we had the opportunity to play tennis for free and learn tennis skills,” explains Trinity. She played tennis competitively in high school and continues to stay active through tennis and other forms of exercise. Tennis has taught her valuable lessons about maintaining a competitive spirit, continuous improvement, and the importance of health and wellness.
The social aspect of tennis is also important to Trinity. She enjoys the camaraderie of being part of a team and particularly enjoys playing doubles. “While I enjoy singles, I really like doubles. You have that support. You have someone to lean on. You have to create connections and strong communication. I'm teaching the girls where to stand, how to position themselves for doubles play, and how to call out ‘I got it’.” Trinity's teaching experience has helped her become an effective coach in tennis, adapting her approach to different age levels and using relatable analogies to help players improve their skills.
Trinity is committed to continuing as a GRTC Coach, as it provides a perfect opportunity for her to connect with the girls in her coaching sessions and contribute to their development. “I have loved seeing the girls blossom, learn new skills, and build their confidence and comfort on the court. At the end of the session, the girls have a party and invite their siblings and parents to play. We have treats and pizza. It was awesome to see them take on a coaching role and give their parents feedback. It was the sweetest thing. It all came full circle. It’s really amazing to see their improvement.”
Given USTA Mid-Atlantic’s vision to enable and support tennis in EVERY community, Trinity’s coaching role with GRTC is reaching an audience from a diverse background who may not have had the opportunity to be exposed to the sport. “The majority of us aren’t brought up in a neighborhood or community where we think about tennis as both an enjoyable and competitive sport. I think GRTC is amazing and it’s important that we try to provide it as a widespread opportunity cross-culturally and socioeconomically nationwide.”
Looking ahead, Trinity's wish for tennis in the next 100 years is to see it offered and practiced at all grade levels, rather than waiting until high school to play competitively in the current education system. “As a former educator, I would love to see kids offered the opportunity to practice, learn and play tennis in all grade levels. I know they do a little bit of tennis in PE, but maybe more competitive tennis play at the middle school and upper elementary level.” She believes that expanding access to tennis and promoting its benefits from an early age will help more kids get involved and enjoy the sport.
When asked about the message she has for Donors who fund the GRTC program, Trinity wants them to know “how impactful it is on a young girls’ confidence and development. GRTC really creates community and builds confidence. A lot of the girls are excited to try out for tennis when they are old enough and in the right grade. It’s been amazing to see.” To learn more about volunteering as a coach/mentor with Girls Rule the Court™ program, please visit the GRTC webapge and join Trinity in making a difference in young girls' lives through tennis.
This year USTA Mid-Atlantic Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is celebrating 100 years of promoting tennis and its physical, social, and emotional health benefits. Get involved and show your support for the next 100 years of tennis. Learn about our impact in the region and how USTA Mid-Atlantic creates community, character, and well-being.