Where Are They Now – Molly Mettler
Where Are They Now?
Dynasty Goalkeeping is so much more than becoming a better goalkeeper and succeeding on the soccer field. Certainly that is a short term goal of ours, to help every student become their best version, but our long term vision is much greater. At our core we take pride in developing leaders beyond the field, getting our students to expand their scope of self, and empowering them to make a greater impression locally and globally. That is where our true impact lies. This blog was developed to highlight our Dynasty alumnae and reconnect you with former students as they make their way in the world. Personally, I think we have a tremendous family of alumnae and I want to share their journeys with you. Hopefully their stories will inspire you onto greatness of your own and open you up to possibilities you never previously imagined!
Molly Mettler attended camp in Dynasty’s second summer of 2007 and came back multiple as a youth player before going on to play collegiately at Santa Clara University. Molly now works for Nike. Now that’s a COOL job!
What year(s) did you attend Dynasty Goalkeeping? What drew you to Dynasty?
I went to Dynasty Goalkeeping in the summers of 2006, 2007, and 2008. I was going into my Freshman through Junior years of high school and was continually getting serious about playing in college. I saw Dynasty Goalkeeping as a great opportunity to hone my skills and train with other top goalkeepers from around the country.
What stands out most to you about your Dynasty experience? How did Dynasty help you grow as a player and person?
I think what helped me grow most as a player was being able to watch the video that was taken throughout the camp. Watching yourself running through technical trainings and live action really allows you to see what the coaches are telling you, and makes it easier to make the adjustments to your game. As a person, the relationships you make at the camp are great. It is fun to be able to keep up with those I attended camp with and see where life has taken them.
Favorite Dynasty memory?
Star Wars! (like Keeper Wars, but better!) Goalkeepers are inherently competitive, so it was always fun to get out there and play games to see everyone’s competitive side come out. There was always lots of laughing and incredible saves being made. We would play until it was dark out, and we would still ask for at least one more game before calling it a night.
How did your experience at Dynasty help you with the transition from youth soccer to college?
I think Dynasty helped me train at a higher caliber. It helped me realize what it was going to take to play in college, and how disciplined I had to be in my training to reach my goals.
You grew up playing club soccer in Portland, OR, what compelled you to pick Santa Clara University?
I knew that I wanted to go to school on the West Coast, and I also knew that I wanted to play Division I soccer at a high level. Additionally, I knew that I wanted to push myself out of my comfort zone, which meant that I wanted to go to school out of state. Santa Clara University provided all those things for me. They have an amazing business program, and a competitive Women’s soccer program. Santa Clara also gave me the sense of community I was looking for in a school and a team. The coaches and my teammates challenged me to be better every day, and those relationships I made will last a lifetime.
What was the biggest challenge you faced in college? (academic and/or athletic)
I went into college with a strong idea academically about what I wanted to study and what career path I wanted to take. My biggest challenge was having a negative experience with a professor who discouraged me in that career choice. He essentially told me that if I couldn’t complete one assignment, then I would never succeed in that space. In the moment, I panicked and felt like I didn’t know what I was going to do or where I was going to go. Looking back though, the experience really forced me to take a step back and re-evaluate my path and what I was passionate about. I’m thankful for that moment, because it helped get me to where I am today. I think it is important to know, that just because you come up to a road block (athletically or academically), it doesn’t mean you won’t be successful.
What was your favorite college soccer highlight?
I was lucky to be on a team that made it to the NCAA tournament 3 out of 4 years I was playing. My favorite highlight was in my senior year when we made it to the Sweet Sixteen in the NCAA tournament. While I wish we could have continued our run in the tournament, we still managed to finish the year ranked #7 in the country. The girls I got to play with, and the experience I had with my team, I wouldn’t change it for the world.
Please list your college accolades (academic and/or athletic)
- 3 trips to the NCAA tournament (1 Sweet Sixteen finish)
- In 15 games played total, I only allowed 1 goal. (redshirted Freshman year, injured Junior year)
Tell us more about your current job down at Nike! Working for Nike would be a DREAM job for many of our students…
- How did you end up there? Just like the goal of playing in college, working at Nike has been a lifelong dream – especially growing up down the street from the Nike World Headquarters. After college, I knew I wanted to move back to Portland, so I set my sights on meeting and talking to as many people as I could to learn about the company and get my foot in the door.
- Can you elaborate on how competitive it is to land a job at Nike? There are certainly a lot of candidates applying to jobs, so getting your foot in the door is the first step. Once you get that first job, you can start to meet more people and build connections that will help set you up for your next steps in your career.
- What is your job description and responsibilities? I am an Associate Product Line Manager for Sports Bras at Nike. I help manage the styles that we will offer globally in each season, and this also includes working cross-functionally with design, technical development, and merchandising. It’s my job to make sure we put the consumer first, while constantly finding ways to innovate and grow our business.
(Editor’s Note: I just recently in the past year switched back to wearing Nike sports bras. They went through a phase where they didn’t fit my body well and I found them too tight. I am THRILLED to learn that Molly is part of the design team that has been instrumental in changing the fit and design of their sports bras! Fun to know one of our student’s is making a difference in a product I wear almost daily!!!)
- What are some of the daily challenges? One daily challenge includes time management and prioritization. We are working through multiple seasons at once, with competing deadlines for each, so time management is important to keep the team on track to meet our deliverables. It is the Product Management team’s job to make sure the team is on the same page and tracking towards our goals.
- Fun perks of the job? My favorite perk is getting to walk into a store, or walk down the street, and see the product I have worked on. Along with that, getting to talk to consumers to hear what is working and what is not, and to be able to turn around to my team and make the changes people are wanting to see. Other fun perks include getting to travel around the world to work with our factory partners to see product being made, as well as getting to talk to consumers worldwide and gain insights from them.
- Is there anything specific that you can pinpoint that you did as a college undergrad that helped you prepare for a successful job acquisition & transition? Going back to the time management and prioritization piece, this was something I learned in college that is really helping me now. As a student athlete, it is a balance of managing your classes and homework with your trainings and games. It taught me how to prioritize what needed to be done, and create a plan that allowed me to be successful both in the classroom and on the field. In college, as well as in my job today, I take about 10 minutes at the beginning of the week to write down what needs to be done, look at my schedule, and create a plan to make sure I complete my deliverables on time.
- What do you enjoy about this opportunity? What excites you about it? I grew up wearing and playing in Nike. I’m excited to make what Nike has better, and to help provide something that helps athletes perform at their best. With sports bras specifically, it is so personal to each athlete, so that has presented me with new challenges and has taught me to look at the bigger picture. I’m excited and feel lucky to have the opportunity to grow the business and inspire the next generation of athletes through our product.
- Did you work anywhere else after college graduation prior to landing your job at Nike? Working at Nike at the Employee Store in Beaverton was my first job out of college, so Nike has been the only company I have worked for since graduating.
Are you involved in soccer at any level anymore?
Yes! I play on a couple co-ed rec teams, both indoor and outdoor. I’m also playing in goal and on the field to keep things interesting! As far as coaching, I’m working my way into doing some GK coaching at the high school level.
Hobbies outside of work?
Even though I grew up in Portland, I really enjoy exploring my city – hikes, food, shopping, friends. Portland has a lot to offer, so I always have new places to try.
Have you maintained the healthy eating habits and exercise you learned as a high level athlete? Why or why not? What are your daily challenges to maintaining that lifestyle?
I certainly try to lead a healthy lifestyle. Work does sometimes get in the way, where I may not have time or I might be tired during the week, but I try to work out at least 2-3 times a week. On top of that, I am conscious about the food I eat. I do my best to prepare my own meals, and prepping my lunches ahead of time helps with that. I find it easier to keep on a healthier schedule if I can grocery shop on Saturdays or Sundays, and then meal prep on Sunday evenings to make sure I have all my meals ready for the week.
I see myself staying at Nike for my whole career, if I am lucky enough to do so. One of the nice things about the company, is that there are so many kinds of jobs that people do. People usually stay in their roles for about 2 years – maybe more depending on the role – so there is a lot of opportunity for growth and change. It allows people to focus on their passions and bring new ideas into different areas. My goal is to one day be a VP of a global category on the apparel side of the business.
How did your career in soccer prepare you for your transition into the ‘real-world’ beyond soccer and the challenges you now face? Any specific examples?
Soccer taught me about relationships and personal interactions. You may have difficult coaches or teammates, or ones you may not like, but that also prepares you for the real world. You won’t like every co-worker or boss that you have, but that situation won’t be forever. In soccer, you begin to learn how to deal with difficult situations and how to approach them, most importantly, how to respect others for the success of the team. The same is true at work and in the real-world.