Farmingdale, N.Y. - Our "Meet the Coach" feature this week is on Head Women's Volleyball Coach Kristy Nix.
Nix joined the Farmingdale State staff in June of 2017. She has coached at all levels of the game from junior high school to Division I.
In her first season at FSC, she led the Rams to a 20-8 overall record including a perfect 10-0 mark in the Skyline Conference.
Nix earned her Bachelor's Degree in Operations Management from Rhode Island College and her Master's Degree in Liberal Arts at Stony Brook University.
How did you get into coaching?
Funny story… I was in my senior year at Rhode Island College finishing my last season of volleyball. One of my mentors (the academic coordinator) who I admired as a coach, friend and administrator told me she set up an interview for me to coach volleyball at the local all-girls high school and that I was going to be a coach. I looked at her like she was crazy and told her I'm not sure I want to coach and even if I did, I don't think I would be as good of a coach as I was as a player. She reassured me and said she saw characteristics in me that I wasn't aware of yet. I told her I would go and ended up coaching the JV volleyball team, the junior high school basketball team (we won the RI State Championship that year) and middle school softball. The rest is history and I knew that I belonged in college athletics working with young adults.
What is your favorite coaching moment/moments of your career?
One of my favorite moments although it was stressful was going undefeated in the conference during my first year at FSC. In our last game, we needed a victory against Mount Saint Vincent to make it a perfect regular season. It was an intense game and one of our best players Annie Cosgrove got injured. I ended up putting in another senior (Samantha Coq) and Mount Saint Vincent decided to serve her - since she wasn't warmed up. She stepped up and we ended up winning the final point to finish undefeated in Skyline Conference play. I was so proud of Samantha for stepping up under pressure and she told me after that she kept telling herself she must do this for her team and for Annie. It was an unforgettable moment and game!
What makes Farmingdale State such a great place to work?
I knew Farmingdale State would be a great place to work when I went for my interview. I met the people who worked in the athletic department including one of my friends I played high school basketball with. I was very impressed with everything Farmingdale had to offer as well as the smaller yet tight nit group within the school and the department. This allowed me to have the freedom to explore many different opportunities, collaborate with my fellow co-workers and teach our student-athletes. It has been a blessing as well as rewarding! It was a great decision to join the FSC family and community.
What would you consider your greatest accomplishment as a coach?
Overall, as a coach, it isn't the awards or games you win but more importantly the interactions I have with my coaches and players. I feel I am a mom to all of my players and having them know that I will always have their back and do whatever I can to look out for their best interests. We have real life conversations so that they can be ready for life after college. I hope they know they can always count on me as a support system.
How would you best describe your coaching style?
I would describe my coaching style as calm, cool and collected. I enjoy having fun with my kids, creating a "family like setting" and always trying to incorporate real life lessons in our teaching throughout the season. I am a strong believer that a coach surrounds themselves with other people who push them to be better as well as give our players a well-rounded approach to the game. It's all about a balance. There is a time to discipline and a time when you know a player may need extra support and talk things out about what is going on in their personal life outside of athletics. I would like to think that all of my players know I care and always have their best interest at heart, even if I have had differences with them. They know I will always be honest and tell them the truth even if they don't want to hear it.
What are the values of your program?
- RAMILY - you are part of a special team at FSC we call FAMILY as a Ram!
- Support system - as well as an outlet
- Knowing I am honestly and genuinely there for our student-athletes to help them get to their next stage in life
- Getting to know who you really are and allowing them to be themselves
- Learning the game to a degree you have never seen before
- Pushing you to reach your potential as a player and person while bringing in the right coaches who have strengths that are my weaknesses
- Loving and enjoying the game you have come to FSC to play