Jessica Medina named National Women’s Developmental Coach for USA Wrestling

By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | March 21, 2019, 9:03 a.m. (ET)
USA Wrestling, the national governing body for wrestling in the United States, has named Jessica Medina of Ferrum, Va. as its new National Women’s Developmental Coach.

Medina will work alongside National Women’s Coach Terry Steiner and Assistant National Women’s Coach Clarissa Chun on USA Wrestling’s women’s wrestling staff, which is based in Colorado Springs, Colo. She will focus on developing age-group athletes across the nation. She will manage the women’s freestyle athletes in the Elite Accelerator Program (EAP) and help coach the U.S. Olympic Training Center resident athletes.

“I hadn’t really considered this before. Since I retired as an athlete, I have been volunteering with USA Wrestling. I still wanted to be a part of the program and to give back. Even when I was coaching in college, I was still volunteering. A lot of people considered me for this new opportunity, which opened my eyes to how I grew up through this program. It is big for me to be able to have an impact with our women’s national program,” said Medina.

“We are excited to have Jessica join our National Team staff. She knows USA Wrestling inside and out. She has been a Board member, a USOTC resident athlete, a National Team member, a World Team member. She wrestled in high school in California and on the college level. She came up through the system. She knows our expectations and how this organization operates. But she also has different experiences, having been a college coach, a Beat the Streets coach, a high school coach and with Regional Training Centers. She brings a different perspective as well, which is very healthy. She has a lot to offer and will be great for our developing athletes,” said National Women’s Coach Terry Steiner.

A long-time member of the U.S. Women’s National Team as an athlete, Medina comes to USA Wrestling after two seasons as the head women’s wrestling coach at Ferrum College in Virginia. In her time at Ferrum, the program has grown and improved.

She has a variety of coaching experiences prior to joining the Ferrum staff. She was a girls wrestling coach for Beat the Streets Philadelphia. She previously served as an assistant wrestling coach at nationally repected Montini Catholic High School in Lombard, Ill., working with boys. At Montini Catholic, she was the first woman to coach at the Illinois High School Association state finals.

Medina has also coached at the USMC Junior and Cadet Nationals as part of Team California, working with many of the nation’s top high school athletes from the state. She has coached U.S. tour teams in international competition. She has also been an active coach at numerous wrestling camps and clinics for many years.

Medina was a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team for six straight years (2009-15). She was a member of the 2009 and 2010 U.S. Senior World Teams, including a ninth-place World finish in 2010. She won silver medals in the 2010 and 2011 Pan American Championships. Medina claimed U.S. Open titles three times (2008, 2010, 2013), and competed in the 2008, 2012 and 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials. Medina was also a 2006 Junior World bronze medalist.

After completing college, Medina spent more than five years as a U.S. Olympic Training Center resident athlete. She also trained in other locations around the nation, including with the Izzy Style WC in Illinois, the Mountaineer RTC at the University of West Virginia, and with the Sunkist Kids RTC at Arizona State University.

Medina was a two-time WCWA college national champion (2006 and 2008) and a 2005 national runner-up for the University of the Cumberlands. She competed for Diamond Ranch High School in Pomona, Calif.

She has been a volunteer leader within USA Wrestling, serving on its Athlete Advisory Committee, as well as serving on the USA Wrestling Board of Directors and its Executive Committee.

Medina has experience working with young athletes, and looks forward to the opportunity to help them achieve their potential.

“I have been in their shoes. Looking back, I can relate to them. That’s a connection a lot of coaches may not have. What I took away from being an athlete, going back to when I started as a younger kid, is that your coach has such a big impact on your life. As I have coached, I realize I become their coach and part of their family. Working with high school and college athletes has been fun for me. I enjoy helping develop them, especially with their character on and off the mat,” she said.

Medina understands the importance of building a successful age-group program for USA Wrestling, as part of a staff which aims to be the world’s best women’s wrestling team. She is motivated to help build a strong foundation for success.

“My vision going into this is that I want to see our program turn the corner. It is exciting to be part of a program for young women that did not exist five years ago. We have the funding, the training partners, the curriculum, everything to excel. I look forward to fine tuning and getting down to individualized plans for the athletes. I will be focusing on figuring out what this age-group needs. As we start young athletes on this journey, we will need to help them become well rounded, so they are successful as wrestlers but also in their lives afterwards,” said Medina.