An Olympic pedigree
As a member of the United States women’s hockey team, Chu won three silver medals and one bronze at the Olympics, on top of five World Championships. In her first assistant coaching position, at the University of Minnesota Duluth, she helped the Bulldogs win the NCAA Division I National Championship in 2008.
She completed another assistant coaching stint at Union College in Schenectady, New York, before joining Concordia’s coaching staff in September 2014.
“Les has done such an incredible job,” she says. “When you have a program that you're proud of, you want to make sure that you bring in quality people that can add to your vision. For Les to trust enough in me and give me a chance to work with this program was incredible.”
Now that she’s officially Concordia’s head coach, Chu has no big plans to shake things up. For the time being, she’ll continue to improve upon what was already set up by her predecessor who led the Stingers to 15 provincial championships and two national titles.
“It's not about completely changing everything that's been set in place,” she says. “It's about enhancing the areas Les has already done an incredible job with, and then evolving some of the other areas, as coaching and sports continue to evolve.”
A team effort
Coaching a university team for a run at the playoffs requires support, and while Chu expects to continue consulting with Lawton for guidance, she’ll also be relying heavily on assistant coach Mike McGrath.
“Our success is going to be directly dependent on those around me — our coaching staff and support staff,” she says. “It's really going to be a team effort, and I'm excited to work on the preparation for the season and then to get the girls back on campus.”
It’s still a couple of months before the Stingers return to the ice as a unit, but Chu can hardly wait to get underway. “I wish it wasn't June; I wish it was the end of August right now,” she says, laughing.
Find out more about the Concordia Stingers women's hockey team.