Halfway through the indoor track season last year, the long distance coach, stopped coaching for Malden High School leaving the team at an important point in the season.

Through this experience, senior and long distance captain Rolando Mejia learned about “what it meant to be a leader, what my responsibilities were, and how to blend with my team. Now, I am at a place where I can both be captain and a teammate.” 

The new long distance coach, Meghan McCormick, has much respect for Mejia, “Mejia has, from day one, brought so much humor and joy to the team! Early on, we met to talk about goals for this year, and I was so excited to work with him!”

Left to Right: Rashmi KC, Thalia Louigene, Rolando Mejia, Arnibish Ray, Slade Harding, and Sean Retotal. CAROLINE SANTOS

Mejia has earned a lot of respect from the people that he works and trains alongside. In addition to being a great captain, Mejia is a skillful athlete. "He helps the team by going out and running hard in practice and races! We are lucky to have him as a leader on the team, and I hope his younger teammates are taking notes for when he is gone,” said McCormick. 

Mejia feels that by working alongside his fellow senior captain Emma Spignese-Smolinsky, he was able to improve as an athlete and leader. “If I see that anyone needs help with understanding the workout or is unsure of how to do certain stretches, I give them advice and what I do for those exercises,” Mejia explained. 

Captain Rolando Mejia posing for a photo. CAROLINE SANTOS

Mejia feels as though this sport has allowed him to improve as a person. “This sport is mostly about holding yourself accountable, so keeping a strong mindset is important,” Mejia explained.

He understands that holding yourself accountable can take you a long way in life and in what you plan to pursue. Mejia does his best to do this daily as he works to lead his team to success. “Don’t demand respect from your peers—earn it,” Mejia emphasized.

Mejia proves a great asset to the team as he continues to inspire his teammates and coaches throughout this season. 

Left to Right: Lynn Classical's Brandon Sok, Everett's Lucas Nunez, Malden's Sean Retotal, and Rolando Mejia. CAROLINE SANTOS

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