Howdy, folks! Bart the Cheer Operations Ninja here. Our latest Science Cheerleader interviewee is Theresa, the cheerleading coordinator for the Indianapolis Colts. I suppose you could say she and I have something in common in that 1) we were never cheerleaders, 2)  we are fans of science, 3) we often do behind-the-scenes work for procheerleaders! Like our other Science Cheerleaders, Theresa has a science degree and a real passion for science. Take a look at what she has to say!
Theresa Colts Cheerleading CoordinatorWhat turned you on to science?
I always loved science. When I was 12 I started working for a veterinarian who would let me run labs and talk to me about the different cases we would work on. I loved it!
What is your degree in and from where?
My degree is a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science.
Favorite and/or least favorite courses you took to prepare for your degree? Why?
I loved Physiology of Reproduction. I had a fabulous professor and I like learning why things work the way they do. I actually liked most of my science classes although I guess I liked biology classes more than chemistry classes. My least favorite class was an accounting class. My other passion is for theater. I have never been a cheerleader. I got involved with Colts Cheerleading through my background with theater. I started helping with halftime shows and other performance shows and tours. Eventually, I became the coordinator.

Theresa Colt Cheerleading Coordinator with country singer JD Danner

Theresa with country singer JD Danner

What’s a typical day like for you?
Today I spend most of my day  working for the Colts but for awhile I was teaching science classes at a small private school. The kids loved to hear both my stories from when I was working with veterinarians and then my experiences with the Colts. I have done some appearances where I go to career days at area schools and they are amazed to hear I work with the Colts Cheerleaders but I have a degree in science!
Best part of your day job or studies?
Appearances in the community.
What’s your take on the the general stereotype of cheerleaders?
Theresa: I think cheerleaders are definitely stereotyped. A few years ago we had a story about one of our cheerleaders doing a photo shoot. Some lady wrote in and was making a lot of derogatory comments. One of her comments was that she, the writer, had a master’s degree, implying that she was better than the cheerleader. I had to inform her that the cheerleader she was talking about had a master’s in chemical engineering and was working for a major pharmaceutical company and was heading her own team of researchers!

What advice would you give your 12-year-old self?
Always leave your options open. You don’t have to be set in one world. I am a very creative person who loves theater and dance, but I also love science. In this case you can have it all! Bottom line: do what really interests YOU.
What are your plans for the future?
For now I plan to continue to work for the Colts. After that, I might go back to teaching kids about science. Wouldn’t it be fun to have a class that was just science experiments and no tests!?
Best experience as a coordinator for the Colts cheerleaders?
Traveling overseas to visit military and performing for them and their families, and of course being at the Super Bowl!
Best science/engineering-related experience?
Working with kids and teaching them all the interesting things going on inside their bodies.
What’s one thing people might find especially surprising about you?
People are usually surprised to find out that I am a dog show judge!

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