Monday, October 20, 2014

Where Are They Now? Kat Powers
February 20, 2014 by Laura Goehrke | No Comments

The Chagrin Falls graduate was a standout in three sports. She's still not far from the courts or fields.

Chagrin Falls High School alumna Kat Powers has always believed in the value of athletics — and as a student, she certainly was involved herself.

From 2003 to 2007 she lettered in varsity basketball, softball and soccer all four years while a Tiger.

Then, she attended Kenyon College, a liberal arts college in Gambier, Ohio, playing four more years of both varsity soccer and basketball, as well as one year of varsity softball.

In 2011, Powers graduated from Kenyon and moved back to Chagrin, and began working at her mother’s — Dr. Sharon Schmahl — dentistry practice.

And though her career as a player came to an end, she knew she wanted to stay involved in the competitive world of athletics, as well as give back to the community. She turned to two new outlets, coaching and officiating, and she’s enjoyed every second of it.

Over the past three years, Powers has coached middle school basketball at Solon, assisted the varsity coaching staff for Solon High School’s basketball and soccer team, as well as Nordonia’s High School softball program.

“It’s a natural way for me to stay involved, especially since I love working with kids,” she said. “The students are amazing on and off the court and field, which makes it easy and joyous for me to coach.”

She’s also in the midst of officiating the current season of high school men and women’s basketball, something which she immediately became passionate about.

“I fell in love right away,” she said. “My goal is to call a fair game, while facilitating the enjoyment of the game.”

She also points out the quality of people she gets to work with.

“The officials are truly professional and they care and sacrifice a lot for the benefit of the students,” she said.

While Powers isn’t on the court or field, she’s a full time student at Case Western School of Dental Medicine.

But balancing academics and athletics comes naturally to her, and she believes that having an athletic outlet improves her studies, as well as keeps her well rounded.

“Through athletics, I’ve learned how to thrive on the small victories of day to day life, and how to constantly push myself to get better,” Powers said. “I’m used to working with personalities of all types, and have grown to understand the importance of a team setting in a school or work environment.”

Her basketball coach at Kenyon, Suzanne Helfant, has a simple phrase that she took a liking to as well — “winners adjust.”

Powers also mentions how lucky she is to be surrounded by positive influences such as other coaches, referees and students, all who make her busy schedule filled with joy, she said.

Since Powers grew up with her mother, Schmahl, as a dentist, and her father, Michael Powers, an oral surgeon, she knew that she wanted to follow in their footsteps career wise.

Powers is the oldest of three children—her sister Aubrey is a senior at Kenyon, and her brother Cam is a junior at Chagrin Falls.

Powers’ has much appreciation for her hometown.

“Chagrin Falls is the epitome of a small town community. It was an incredible place to grow up, and an unbelievable experience.”

Not only is she grateful for being from the area, but also for being back as a young adult.

“This community raised me, and I want to help keep it just as strong for the next generation. It’s nice to be back to my roots, but not reliving them. It’s provided me with a solid foundation, and I’m proud to be back.”

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