Elite Team Coach
HOME LIFE: Tanya grew up in Laketown, Utah, near Bear Lake. She is the youngest of 3 girls, all of whom played volleyball collegiately. We were the “volleyball family”. She went to SLCC for 1 year then to went to USU. The summer after her sophomore year in college she met her husband Brandon Birch, while he was in physical therapy for a shoulder injury and Tanya was a Physical Therapist Aid. Between her junior and senior years of volleyball, they gotmarried. Seventeen years later they have 4 children, Keira 10, Olivia 10, Avery 7, and Devin 4. As a family, they love to swim, hike, bike, and play a variety of sports. Tanya worked ten years in Cardiac Rehab, 3 of those years as the Lead. She started a Pulmonary Rehab program. She was a Registered Nurse in the Emergency Room. When Avery was 8 months old, they decided it would be best for their family for her to be a stay-at-home-mother. A job she truly loves!
EDUCATION: She graduated valedictorian of Rich High School. At USU, Tanya received her Bachelors in Exercise Physiology and was Valedictorian. She then graduated with her master’s degree in Exercise Physiology, as the Top Graduate Student and Top Research Assistant. She was an Academic All-American and received the Joe-Whiteside Scholar Athlete Award. She graduated from Weber State as a Registered Nurse.
VOLLEYBALL CAREER: From the time Tanya was in 4th grade and started sneaking out of clogging practices (her mother was a dancer) to play volleyball in the gym with her sisters, she was hooked on volleyball. She would wake up at 4:30 am in the morning to be in the gym by 5:00 am and practice again in the evenings. She made Varsity VB her freshman year in high school and was a starter and made the All-State team her sophomore year. She was Player-of-the-Year and Most Valuable Player for her Junior and Senior VB years. Her high school team won state championships all 4 of her high school years. She played club VB from 7th grade through 12th grade. Her 12th grade year she played for Utah Juniors and was selected for the All-Region team, and her team took second place in the Jr. Olympics in Houston, Texas. She played for SLCC on scholarship for 1 year then Tanya came to USU on a full-ride for her remaining 3 years.
COACHING CAREER: Tanya has helped with summer camps for 4 years. She has coached recreational soccer and basketball and has coached two volleyball club seasons.
WHY I COACH: While many people who knew Tanya when she was in Jr. and High school would say “she eats, sleeps, and drinks VB”, VB taught her a work ethic, competitive drive to achieve, cooperation, teamwork, self-sacrifice, and time-management that helped her to be successful when her VB days were over. She would like to help other athletes develop a love for a great sport that will help them achieve attributes that will make them successful in life.
VOLLEYBALL IDOL: My parents and all parents who support their children as they strives for their dreams. I would not be who I am without parents willing to make personal sacrifices for my dreams.
FAVORITE QUOTE: “Somewhere someone is practicing and when you meet her in head to head competition she will beat you.”