Local Coach Makes a Difference in Adopted Country
Andover, MA - Nestled in a small town in Cumbria, England, a bright-eyed three-year-old fell in love with the game of tennis while playing with her dad. The now 25-year-old is Emily Wise, the Assistant Director of Tennis at Spark Fitness and Tennis Club in Andover, MA. Her story spans the globe but the one thing that weaves all her life experiences together is tennis.
“Tennis has given me every opportunity I’ve had. Being from a small town, not many people get the opportunity to see the world and I’ve been fortunate that tennis has given me that opportunity. It’s broadened my worldview,” said Wise.
Her dad is a self-taught player and certified coach who built a vibrant tennis community in their hometown. “He’s my biggest inspiration for being a coach today,” added Wise.
Throughout her junior career she raked up singles and doubles titles. Her successes led her to a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to play in a championship at Wimbledon in London when she was 14 years old.
In 2015, Wise earned an academic and athletic scholarship to Newman University in Wichita, Kansas to play on the tennis team. She made her first trip across the pond to pursue her dreams. While at Newman, she played singles and doubles and captained the team her senior year while majoring in business.
After undergrad, Wise decided to stay in the country she fell in love with and got a high school coaching job at a school in Wichita. In a nod to the coaching skills she learned from her dad and her time as a player, the team went on to win the Kansas State Championship.
Shortly after, Wise earned her Master’s degree in Sports Management from Wichita State University. During that time she interned with Alex Skinner at Chatham Beach and Tennis Club. Soon after graduating, she got the opportunity to go work for her mentor at his new place of work, Spark Fitness and Tennis Club.
“When running a tennis program, you post about open positions all the time. You don’t always expect to find a young professional who who can positively affect the lives of her students and coworkers the way Emily does. Two years removed from her summer at Chatham Beach and Tennis Club, the members continue to talk about the impact she had and how much they miss her. Hiring her to work at Spark this year has been important to me and the Spark community. She is one of a kind as a professional and person and we hope to have her a Spark for many years to come,” said Skinner.
Long-term, Wise is hoping to stay in the country she now calls home and wants to continue using the sport of tennis to impact lives.
“It’s nice to see the affect that you have on people when you coach, especially kids. When kids leave tennis and tell their parents they had fun, we’re doing a good job. As much as I want them to learn tennis and improve, I want them to have fun. If I’ve done that, I’ve done a good job,” said Wise.