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Coaching Staff

Head Coach: Laura Rush



Coach Laura Rush began as a sweep rower for Mercyhurst College from ’97-’01 where she held the school 2k erg record until 2011. Her love and admiration for the sport led her to begin her career as a coach at Lake Lanier Rowing Club. There she trained the Juniors & Masters in sweep and sculling. Rush, herself, began sculling at Lanier alongside some veteran and aspiring National Team members. 


Rush then moved to Philly for graduate work at Temple University and to immerse herself in a larger rowing community. During her studies, she coached Temple’s Novice women. She ultimately moved on to coach at the University of Pennsylvania (Collegiate Novice Women), Vesper Boat Club (Pre-elite women), and Villanova University (Collegiate Varsity & Novice Men). Rush also worked the summer sculling program at PGRC in Philly, coaching Master’s rowers again.


After a break in coaching, Laura landed at Carnegie Mellon as their head coach. Most recently, she has worked with Junior’s rowers at Montgomery Bell Academy & the Nashville Rowing Club. With Nashville, she ran the Development teams for both the Junior’s and Masters and offered private sculling lessons.


Her experience has included teaching rowers of all ages and abilities-even one blind woman who’s excitement for the sport is still an inspiration to Rush. Laura enjoys sharing and teaching this sport to any and all up for the adventure.

Assistant Coach: Lilla Caton


Lilla Caton began competitive sweep rowing for Nashville Juniors '15-'18 after first learning to row in NJ as part of an after-school middle school development program. With Nashville Juniors she fostered a love of rowing, competed at the junior nationals level, and even first met Coach Laura! Coach Lilla was then recruited to row at the division I level for the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. After the covid-19 pandemic and a back injury prematurely ended her collegiate rowing career, she took some time away from the sport. However, Lilla's love of rowing brought her back to the rowing community as a coach.


The '22-'23 academic year brought Coach Lilla to Penn State to pursue a PhD in biomedical engineering, focusing on upper body biomechanics. In her first year with Penn State Crew she headed the novice program and introduced a coxswain development curriculum to the team. Lilla is grateful for the ability to share her love of the sport with Penn State!


“The only thing the sport gives us are moments. But what the hell is life, Peter, apart from moments?” -Fredrik Backman, Beartown

Novice Coach: Hannah Shorkey


Hannah Shorkey began her rowing career as a sweep rower for Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapid, MI, from 2018-2022. At Grand Valley, Hannah was able to develop her skills, fitness, and love for rowing with the help of her teammates and a strong coaching staff. Hannah sat in stroke seat of the W1V8+, and despite losing a year and a half of competition due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Hannah secured two National Championship titles and around 20 medals for Grand Valley.

Hannah began law school at Penn State Law in 2022. She used her year of extended eligibility due to the pandemic to row for Penn State Crew. Now, Hannah is excited to continue her involvement with the team as the Novice Coach. Hannah's former teammates at Grand Valley and Penn State continue to inspire her to keep improving as a coach and to share her passion for rowing. Hannah is excited to work with the novice at Penn State, helping them begin their rowing journeys and laying the foundation for their continued rowing careers. 

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