Graceland University Athletic Director Brady McKillip announced Monday the promotion of Uyen Tran to head coach for Graceland Women’s Basketball.
“I was impressed by Uyen over the entire three-week national search, as she kept rising to the top through each round of the process,” said McKillip. “Along with the dedication she has shown to the program, current players and recruits, I feel she has the ability to be a very successful coach moving forward. I look forward to working with her as she takes the program and the student-athletes involved to their greatest potential.”
Associate Athletic Director Zack Mullins, who led the search committee, which considered more than 80 applicants, said, “In the search for our next women's basketball coach, we wanted to be aggressive while also keeping a high level of diligence, integrity and attention. Through that process, Uyen Tran emerged as the candidate to move our program forward. She displayed a strong ability to create long-lasting relationships with student-athletes, a commitment to empowering students for meaningful and productive lives, and the drive to position the program for future success. These were all key characteristics the committee, as well as the administration, felt would help our women's basketball program move forward. I personally would like to thank our search committee for their dedication, work and time throughout this process of naming our next head coach.”
Tran enters her fifth year as a collegiate coach. She started with the Yellowjackets last June as the varsity head assistant coach and JV head coach. Prior to coming to Graceland, Tran served one year as an assistant coach for the women’s basketball team at SUNY Sullivan County Community College, where she helped lead the team to a 14-11 record, a Mid-Hudson Conference championship, Region XV championship and the District N&O semifinals. She also worked as a sports information director and operations assistant at Central Methodist University from 2016-18, where she was responsible for marketing and promotion, which helped to prepare her to lead the social media presence for the Yellowjackets women’s basketball and help with recruiting efforts.
Tran’s coaching philosophy provides her with the primary objective to teach and to positively impact the lives of her players in order to guide them to success in their lives after basketball. “I want to not only develop them on the basketball court, but more importantly, develop life skills that will allow them to become successful leaders in their own lives,” she shared.
“My vision and goal for the program is to set a commitment to excellence in everything we do – academically and athletically,” continued Tran. “I believe that by having a commitment-to-excellence mentality, the success will fall in place.”