Andrew Graber
Head Strength + Conditioning Coach for Women's Basketball, University of North Carolina
Andrew Graber

Strong calling

Andrew grew up in a sports-loving family, and he soon became passionate about fitness and sports himself. While at Northwestern, his ongoing involvement in physical training and intramural competition caused him to think about a sports-related career. He credits NWC faculty with helping him identify his particular passion for strength and conditioning. As a result, he chose exercise science as his major.

What did you most appreciate about Northwestern’s faculty?
I greatly appreciated the amount of time they would give to students, individually. They were very flexible and available to answer questions and help provide resources outside of the classroom. They challenged me to grow and equipped me to be successful in my academic endeavors. The faculty also provided me with real-world experience that really bolstered my learning.

What are some of your favorite memories from your time at NWC?
I loved participating in intramural sports with my friends and heading to the Hub afterward.

How well did Northwestern prepare you for your career after graduation?
Being provided with an active role within the Northwestern strength and conditioning program was very helpful. I was given leadership opportunities that helped me develop as a strength coach. NWC academic studies also developed my understanding of the research process and the proper application of principles. 

What are your main roles at UNC and what do you like about your job?
I direct, design and implement all strength and conditioning programming for the women's basketball program. I previously oversaw strength and conditioning for women’s lacrosse and rowing and assisted with women’s basketball. One of my  responsibilities has been to implement and interpret wearable technology data for a variety of team sports. I love being part of a staff that is actively investing in the lives of our student-athletes. I also love being able to dive into the data we collect to greater understand the demands of the particular sports and to identify ways we can constantly improve how we’re serving our student-athletes.

What are your career goals?
I want to continue working with strength and conditioning at the collegiate level. I hope to be able to invest in aspiring strength coaches, just like the faculty at NWC did for me.

In what ways did you grow in your faith at Northwestern?
At Northwestern, I was constantly surrounded by people who were passionate about service. That really opened my eyes to the many ways we can serve. The faculty and staff, as well as my friends, were always encouraging me and challenging me through small groups, discipleship groups and chapel. The community of believers there really made it easy to tie my faith into my academics and find my calling.