Press Release courtesy of Hartford Athletics
University of Hartford head volleyball coach Vinh Nguyen announced the addition of Kellen Tensen to the Hawks’ coaching staff on Tuesday. Tensen comes to Hartford following a successful playing career at Johnson & Wales University in Providence, R.I.
“Kellen is a wonderful addition to our volleyball program,” said Nguyen. “She will bring a positive and energetic enthusiasm to our volleyball team. She was trained under Nancy Somera, the 2017 NCAA Division III National Coach of the Year, of Johnson & Wales and will be a great resource at practice and on the sideline during matches.”
A four-year setter from 2012-15, Tensen helped Johnson & Wales rebuild its volleyball program. She led the Wildcats to their first Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Championship and NCAA Tournament appearance since 2010 as a senior captain in 2015.
Tensen, a two-time All-GNAC selection, closed out her career by earning All-Conference First Team and GNAC All-Tournament Team honors as a senior captain. The New Canaan, Conn., native saw action in 364 sets and closed out her career with 2,470 assists, including 1,075 as a junior in 2014.
Following her collegiate career, Tensen was the recipient of the 2016 Rhode Island Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (RIAIAW) Distinguished Athlete of the Year Award. Presented to one female student-athlete from each of Rhode Island’s nine colleges and universities, the award recognizes athletic excellence, academic success and leadership.
Off the court, Tensen was heavily involved with Johnson & Wales’ SAAC during her collegiate career. She was also a student assistant for the Wildcats’ game operations staff in addition to helping coordinate the Rhode Island Special Olympics volleyball competition, which was held annually on the campus of Johnson and Wales.
Prior to joining the Hawks’ staff, Tensen was employed by Kraft Sports Group of Foxborough, Mass., before serving as the Hospitality and Events Coordinator at MKTG in Westport, Conn.
“Kellen’s background in marketing with both Kraft and MKTG will be a great asset in the office,” Nguyen continued. “She is extremely organized and articulate, and will also be a great asset on the recruiting trail.”
Tensen graduated from Johnson & Wales in 2016 with a degree in sports, entertainment and event management before receiving her Master of Business Administration from her alma mater one year later.
Hartford Director of Athletics Mary Ellen Gillespie hired Nguyen as the 11th head coach in the 41-year history of the Hawks’ volleyball program in February. He comes to Hartford after spending the previous three seasons as the Associate Head Coach at North Texas. Nguyen brings a wealth of collegiate coaching experience to the Hawks, also logging six seasons as a member of Cal State Fullerton’s coaching staff and 12 as an assistant at Cal Poly Pomona
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