ANGOLA — Trine University has hired an experienced youth ice hockey administrator and coach as its new youth hockey director and assistant rink manager for the Thunder Ice Arena.
John Mihalik most recently served as hockey director and director of player development at Palm Beach Skate Zone in Lake Worth, Florida. In that role, he managed youth and adult hockey leagues, clinics and camps, with duties including recruiting, promotion, coaching and administrative work. He also was responsible for recruiting, training and evaluating youth hockey coaches.
His experience also includes serving as hockey director at The Pond Ice Rink in Chagrin Falls, Ohio, and as hockey director and assistant program director at Miami (Ohio) University’s Goggin Ice Center. During his time at Miami University, he was head coach for the university’s ACHA Division II men’s ice hockey team for two seasons.
He also served as an assistant manager and graduate assistant at the Kent State University Ice Arena.
“We are very excited to have John join us in the rink to oversee the youth hockey program,” said Thunder Ice Arena manager Mike Ferrell. “Besides his many years of experience directing and growing youth programs, John has been with a college rink before, and will have great ideas to add programs for our students.
“John has a great love for the game of hockey. He enjoys teaching and helping kids meet their goals and dreams.”
Mihalik replaces Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock in the Trine role. Schrock resigned to become the head coach of the new Fort Wayne Spacemen junior hockey team.
Mihalik said he is looking forward to growing youth hockey in Angola and northeast Indiana, and is excited to meet current youth hockey players and families.
“My philosophy revolves around making sure kids fall in love with hockey through fun practices that teach the game and develop skills,” he said. “My goal is to continue to provide a fun, athlete-centered, professionally run youth hockey program.”
He said he was impressed by Trine University, including the top-notch ice rink, beautiful campus and genuinely friendly staff across campus.
A Kent State University graduate, Mihalik earned a Bachelor of Science degree in sport management and a Master of Science in sports studies with a concentration in athletic coaching and sport administration.
He played on the men’s hockey team for four seasons while an undergraduate at Kent State, serving as assistant captain his senior season. During that time, the team made two appearances in the national tournament.
Mihalik holds several professional certifications from the U.S. Ice Rink Association and Level 4 coaching certification from USA Hockey.
For more information on the Thunder Ice Arena and the Trine hockey programs, go online to thundericearena.com.