Saturday, July 07, 2007

Beyond the Pom-poms: Tina 

Posted by Sasha at 9:31 AM ET

July 2, 2007

1. What are you up to now?
am currently teaching Psychology and United States History at Marvin Ridge High School in Union County. I have been teaching since I left the Top Cats in 1998. In 2004 I received my National Board Certification and was also awarded the 2004 Christa McAuliffe Reach for the Stars Award by the National Council for the Social Studies for the development and implementation of an international studies program for North Carolina high school students in Dublin, Ireland. I have spent the past few summers accompanying students to Dublin through this program.

2. What was your most memorable moment as a TopCat?
There are so many! However, I will never forget the feelings and experience of the very first TopCats tryouts. Many of those on the inaugural squad still probably laugh at the thought of free-styling for 30 seconds in front of the judges and the public.

3. Do people still give you that "I know her from somewhere" look?
Strangely enough, I do from time to time. I was in the grocery store with my kids one day and a woman stopped me to say that she remembered me from the first year of tryouts. She had tried out for the team but hadn’t made it, but she remembered me (which once again, caused me to think back on that 30-second free-style with a bit of embarrassment). It’s funny to think that anyone would really remember me, but to my surprise, it does occur.

4. What do you miss the most from your TopCat experience?
I certainly miss the connections with the other team members. It is rare that I get a chance to gather with 34 other women who all have so much in common. But I have to admit that I miss the thrill of kickoff. There is so much energy and excitement at the beginning of every game. It’s a feeling I’ll never forget.

5. During Super Bowl XXXVIII, I was...
...watching the game in Dublin, where I had gone to work on a facet of the summer program.

6. When at games now, who do you watch more, the players or the current TopCats?
I am still a fan of the game, so I do watch the game. However, I have to be honest in saying that I probably watch the cheerleaders more closely.

7. If I could give a current TopCat advice, it would be to….
Relish every moment you wear that uniform. Take great pride in what you are doing for the organization and as ambassadors for the Carolina community, and remember the fans are the most important part of the experience that you will have as a TopCat.
8. How many games do you go to or watch on TV?
Although I have not made it to many games since I have had children, I have managed to watch almost every game on TV. I even managed to catch a game while I was overseas a few years ago.

9. How has your experience with the TopCats benefited you today?
My experience with the TopCats has definitely given me more confidence as an individual. Since I was new to the area when I originally made the team, being part of the TopCats also gave me a greater understanding of the people in Charlotte and the surrounding areas.

10. If you could use one word to describe your TopCats experience, what would it be?
Incredible. There was nothing like being part of the inaugural team. I will always cherish the experience.

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