Current Coaching Position: Volunteer Assistant Coach, University of Toronto; Assistant Coach, Team Ontario, 2011 Canada Winter Games
CAC Program Involvement: Women in Coaching Canada Games Apprenticeship Program
Mentor: Stephane Cadieux
“When applying to be an Olympic torch bearer, Melissa Hill made a personal pledge to be a leader in her sport and help keep Canadians healthy and active through participation in badminton. Being an apprentice coach for the 2011 Canada Winter Games is a great start to fulfilling her commitment as a torchbearer and we are delighted that the Ontario Badminton Association and the Coaches Association of Ontario are teaming up to support Melissa with this great opportunity,” - Susan Kitchen, Executive Director, Coaches Association of Ontario
Melissa began playing badminton at the age of seven at the Boulevard Club in Toronto. Her competitive career began at the age of 13 and as a junior (U-19), she was ranked in the top three in Canada. She is a 10-time Ontario University Athletics (OUA) All-Star and was OUA Female MVP in 2006. Melissa is still competing at the university level.
Since 2005, Melissa has been an assistant coach at the University of Toronto, working with head coach Wayne King. She coaches male and female players, aged 17 to 23, five to six days a week for eight months of the year. She is also assistant coach of Team Ontario for the 2011 Canada Winter Games. Melissa was district head coach for the Central Ontario Badminton Association at the 2006 Ontario Winter Games and spent two years as head coach at McMaster University as well as one year as an assistant coach at that institution. While in high school, she was an assistant coach for two years at summer camps.
Melissa is working on a PhD in the Department of Medical Biophysics at the University of Toronto, researching mammographic imaging and working on new techniques to improve the detection and diagnosis of breast cancer.
• Engineering Physics degree, McMaster University
• PhD student, Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto
• National Coaching Certification Program, Level 3 certification in badminton
Expectations of the Women in Coaching Canada Games Apprenticeship Program
“I am excited to have been selected for the apprenticeship program. It is both an honour and a privilege to be a part of a program that involves so many strong women. They are a source of inspiration for me and I now have a supportive network of coaches from coast-to-coast that possess a wealth of knowledge from a wide variety of experiences in an array of sports. I hope to improve my coaching skills at the national level through the experiences I will gain working with Team Ontario. Women in Coaching is already opening new doors for me to develop and revealing doors that I otherwise wouldn’t have known existed. This is not only a great opportunity for my own development, but is also a positive reflection on the sport of badminton. I will encourage other badminton coaches to go through this program in the future as it would only serve to strengthen our sport community.”
Greatest achievement: Carrying the torch for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games.
Source of motivation: My parents, who have always encouraged me in all aspects of life and have supported my participation in sport. They are a big reason for my success. My husband, Ian Hill, is also a source of motivation. He believes in me and manages to put up with my long hours of devotion to badminton. We are definitely pretty competitive with each other, and that keeps me going.
Greatest wish: That I can inspire others to go after their dreams.