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Angie Dornauer: Success of a Coach

Fall/Winter 2014

Students receiving guidance through Tiffin University’s Success Coach Program are learning from those who know how to achieve a goal.

Angie Dornauer, who has been a Success Coach since January 2011, has competed in marathons and triathlons since 2008.

“As a breast cancer survivor, I value good health,” she said. “I am blessed to train and complete these physical and mental challenges. After I complete these events, I feel stronger as a person.”

Dornauer, who received an undergraduate degree in psychology, several certifications in special education and a master’s degree in guidance counseling, grew up in Cleveland and moved to the Tiffin area with her husband in 1986 when he started his oral and maxillofacial surgery practice. She has two sons, Matt and Mark, who were raised in Tiffin.

Dornauer explained that a triathlon is an athletic event consisting of an open-water swim of one-half mile to one mile where the participant often wears a wetsuit, swim cap and goggles. Participants then run to a transition area and change into bicycling gear to cycle 15 to 40 miles, depending on the course. They then return to the transition area and change into running gear to finish the race with a 5- to 10-kilometer run.

Dornauer has competed in three triathlons, two in Chicago and one in Cleveland. “I completed these with my family which made them very special,” she said. “These are incredible memories for my family.”

The 2014 Chicago Triathlon, the largest in North America with 10,000 participants, was Dornauer’s most recent triathlon. She received a trophy for finishing third in her age group. Dornauer said her favorite triathlon was her first one where she and her two sons and husband completed the 2010 Chicago Triathlon. At the Cleveland Triathlon in 2011, she and her son each earned second in their age groups, and her husband earned first in his age group.

“The three of us were photographed by the Cleveland Plain Dealer wearing our medals,” she said. “It is unusual to have all family members competing in an event place well enough to earn gold and silver medals.”

Dornauer said she enjoys the process of training for three separate events that require goal setting, disciplined preparation and completion of the goals during competition.

“The exhilaration of competition when you have prepared properly is an ultimate high,” she said.

Dornauer trains every day for such events. She said she runs daily and has completed marathons, running up to 20 miles when training for the 26.2-mile distance of a marathon. She bicycles with her husband when the weather permits and swims in pools throughout the year and outside in Lake Erie or Lake Michigan.

She and her husband love to cross country ski as well. “We may be the only two people in Tiffin who love the snow and ski every day there is snow,” she said.

Dornauer always runs in the large marathons and raises money for charities. Last year in Chicago, she raised money for Ronald McDonald House, and this year will raise money for Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center to help fund pediatric cancer research.

“After this marathon, I will be anxious to swim or ski, anything but run for a while,” she said. “I might even eat a few desserts.”

Dornauer is setting a positive example for the students with whom she works.

TU’s Success Coach Program was designed to help students who are on academic probation or warning. TU’s Success Coaches assist students in locating materials, places, and people on-campus. They offer support, encouragement, positive reinforcement, and academic strategies to improve academic performance. Success Coaches focus on providing personal development, assistance with planning and organization, and motivation to succeed.

As a Success Coach, Dornauer helps students who are having a difficult time adapting to the academic challenges of college. She said Tiffin University’s First Lady Susan Marion was instrumental in starting the program and brought her into the program as a Success Coach.

“My years of teaching and guidance counseling help me understand their problems and develop ways to help them make reasoned and well-informed choices,” she said. “I enable them to succeed at Tiffin University and life.”

Dornauer said she enjoys making a positive difference in young people’s lives.

“I have two sons who have succeeded in undergraduate and graduate studies,” she said. “I understand the challenges of higher education and know how to relate to young men and women.”