Abbie Charrier ’16 and Caitlyn Poulin ’17 both went to Mount View High School and played field hockey together. Abbie was the goalie, and Caitlyn was the sweep; they had their own language and powerful chemistry while playing.
After high school, they both ended up at Thomas College – again, playing field hockey together.
Now, they are both coaching the Waterville Senior High School field hockey team.
“It’s a fantastic feeling knowing you have a friend who you have spent so long with and still wants to play field hockey with you,” said Caitlyn. “Through all the wins and all the losses, being the bad cop to my good cop, I’m so happy to have Abbie by my side through all of it.”
Caitlyn and Abbie just finished up their first season as coaches at Waterville High School together. Abbie cannot wait to have more seasons together.
“Coaching together now and trying to provide our athletes with the wisdom imparted by our coaches is very rewarding, and I cannot wait to see where it leads,” said Abbie.
Caitlyn grew up in the small town of Knox, which had more cows than people in it. At Thomas College, she studied criminal justice and accounting. Right now, she’s working on her master’s degree in Cybersecurity at Thomas College.
While Caitlyn is coaching high school field hockey and studying for her Master’s in Cybersecurity, she is also working for Wayfair in Brunswick, Maine, as a fraud analyst.
“I spend my days reviewing orders placed by customers, validating the customer is legitimate, and that the person using the card is the person who owns the card,” she said.
Caitlyn surely is busy, but coaching with her best friend has been great.
“Being a coach has its challenges for sure and is a very time-consuming job. It’s all worth it, though, when you see the skills that your players have gained, and you get to watch to watch them grow as individuals,” said Caitlyn.
Caitlyn loved her time at Thomas College because she felt like she was part of a family. She also felt lucky to be taught, in her opinion, by some of the best coaches.
“I’m very proud to be a Thomas College alumna because I loved my time at Thomas,” said Caitlyn. “It really set me on the right path to get to where I’m going to want to be in life. I made great friends, got to play my favorite sport, and today still feel like I matter whenever I go to visit. because the professors remember me.”
Abbie works with kids during her part-time gig of coaching and in her full-time job as the Assistant Director of Camps and Trips at the Alfond Youth Center. In this job, she works with two summer camp programs based in Oakland, Maine: Camp Tracy and New England Sports Camps. She also organizes and attends the American Heritage Tours, which takes eighth-grade students and their parents on a week-long trip to Pennsylvania, Washington, D.C., New York City, and Boston.
“At the camps, I work with youth athletes, coaches, and counselors to create an experience that teaches them skills for on and off the field. For tours, I organize meetings and prepare the students and parents for the experiences they will have on the trip,” said Abbie. “Both roles allow me to work on social media marketing, communications, fundraising, financing, management, and a lot more.”
Abbie felt very prepared taking on such a demanding position because of her experience at Thomas.
“Thomas prepared me by offering the appropriate classes with outstanding professors. They also prepared me by showing me how a business can be run successfully, while growing immensely, and continuously supplying their customers with the education and services they need to succeed.”
Abbie said besides the experiences and preparation she was offered at Thomas College, she also says she was shown a lot of love and support from the community – especially when she suffered a traumatic event during her junior year.
“I was kicked in the face by a horse, shattering my right sinus cavity,” said Abbie. “It was at the end of spring break, and I still went back to campus that day.”
Abbie’s roommates and parents helped her carry stuff up to her room. Her teammates were concerned, and her field hockey coach checked on her every day.
“My professors not only asked if I needed time off, but also recommend surgeons and hospitals,” said Abbie. “Dining services met with me before surgery to make sure that when I came back to campus, I would have enough soft food options at meals (so my dietary needs would be met). Maintenance staff would offer to go get my laundry for me or bring me ice. Even a board member approached me in the dining hall saying they had heard what happened, wanted to hear the story from me and wanted to know if there was anything I needed,” said Abbie.
“When I tell people about this they are in awe,” she said. “When my peers who went to other schools hear about this, they resoundingly agree that they would not have gotten that support from their school community.”
Abbie said attending Thomas College was the best decision she has ever made.