Tompkins Cortland Community College has a coach for its new men's and women's cross country programs. Peggy Dunham has been hired to spend this year recruiting and then leading the Panthers into NJCAA competition in the fall of 2019.
Dunham brings an array of relevant experience to the positon. She ran cross country in college, competing at the junior college level while a student at Mohawk Valley Community College and then at the NCAA level at Cortland State. She has coached the boys' and girls' modified cross country teams at Groton for the last eight seasons, a job she started after spending time watching her son run in high school. "I'm excited about this opportunity because I always enjoyed running cross country, especially while in college," said Dunham. "This is a great opportunity for kids who enjoy running at the high school level to continue their running into college."
"Coach Dunham's experiences as a runner, a coach, and a parent will be tremendous assets as she goes about establishing our new program," said Tompkins Cortland Director of Athletics Mick McDaniel. "We've never had cross country or any other running-specific sport in the 50-year history of the College, but with the continued growth of the sport regionally and nationally across the NJCAA, we think this is the perfect time to add cross country to our varsity sports at Tompkins Cortland. We're looking for Coach Dunham to have a great year recruiting so our team hits the ground running in 2019."
The recruiting process is underway. "I'm trying to find talented runners and good teammates, but I'm also looking for potential," said Dunham. "And enthusiasm is very important. I want our student-athletes to be excited about running and about their schoolwork. I know cross country played a significant role in my growth while at college, and I'm eager to see it do the same thing for our student-athletes here at Tompkins Cortland."