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My Manchester Story

David Good

by Lauren Hughes | Jun 06, 2019

David Good, Grounds Coordinator

"What brought you to Manchester?"

“My wife. This is home for her. I mean, it’s a crazy long story. We met each other growing up as missionary kids in Nigeria.  My family is actually from southeastern Pennsylvania, and this is home territory for her. Her mom taught here at the college for years. One time when we were visiting out here for Christmas break, I just decided to check out opportunities here at the college.  I was sort of in transition and got lucky. I landed in a position where I was able to do two things that I really enjoy doing - coaching the soccer team and working with the grounds crew.”

"Did you start here as a coach, groundskeeper, or both?"

“Both. I was doing both things since 1981, until I retired from the coaching position in the spring of 2016, after 36 years with the team.  When I started in 1980, I came knowing both positions were going to be open within a year. The first year I helped as an assistant coach on the soccer team and worked on a special projects crew in Maintenance. I became head coach in 1981 and transitioned into the grounds position that year, too.”

"What is your favorite thing about Manchester?"

“I think what drew me here and what has kept me here is the general philosophy that Manchester has. I can identify with the mission statement. I like our international connections, I like our service-minded orientation, and I like our peace and justice philosophies. What has kept me here is that we hold true to most of that. Many of my co-workers, both faculty and staff, have been fun to work with over the years and I enjoy being around college students.”

"What is your favorite thing about the students, faculty and staff you work with?"

“In my role on the grounds crew, I get to work with individual students who are a part of our crew and over the years that’s been a whole lot of fun. The different characters you meet and the relationships you can develop with students is pretty special. The same with the soccer team. Being involved with the soccer team for so many years, I had the chance to get to know guys really well. You spend a whole lot of time together, both on the team as well as working on the grounds crew, and just getting to know people personally and getting to hear people’s stories… you have a lot of fun together.”

"What is your favorite memory from your time at Manchester?"

“Oh man… that is just too crazy to think about. For me, some of my most vivid memories are the January session trips that I took with the guys on the soccer teams over the years. We always combined some kind of a work camp along with the January Session class and those trips have been special memories.”

"What is your favorite thing about your job?"

“Well, I have said this more than once. In fact, I used to tell soccer recruits this – I hope people can be as lucky as I am at this age, to have been able to do two things you really enjoyed as a three year old. I’ve had a chance to play or be involved with soccer my whole life. I’ve [also] had the chance to play in the dirt my whole life. Those are two things I enjoyed as a three-year old and I’m still doing them. I thoroughly enjoy the grounds work.  I like – well, I just enjoy gardening in general and I like being able to look over my shoulder and see what I’ve done at the end of the day. I like the fact that – I think what we do makes a difference around here [by] keeping the place clean and attractive.  I hope it contributes to people feeling good about being on campus. I enjoy planting things, I enjoy watching things grow, and I enjoy all the work we put in down on the athletic fields.”

"What is the most challenging thing about your job?"

“There’s just so much to do. I mean, on the grounds crew there are only two of us who are full time employees and then we supplement that help with about 40 hours of student labor during the school year and then about 4-5 full time students in the summer when there’s more to do. There’s always more to do than what there’s time. We try to hide what we can’t do and highlight the really obvious areas. So that’s our biggest challenge. We just keep plugging away day by day and do what we can and try to keep things as neat and attractive as possible.”

"Are you involved with anything on campus?"

“Yeah, I’m not doing any coaching anymore. I just enjoy being a spectator now. For years, I was a part of the staff organizing committee on campus and I still try to participate in those activities. I try to support campus programs in music and art.  Within the community I’m heavily involved in coordinating the spring youth soccer program. I’ve been doing that for 30+ years. And I try to be involved in other ways in the community with some of the service projects that are available. And [I’m] also very involved with my local church congregation. I have an interest in the international students on campus partly because of my upbringing, growing up in Nigeria the way I did. Interestingly enough, I’ve made sort of a cool connection with a student from Nigeria (Susu Lassa) who went to the same school that my wife and I went to when we were growing up as missionary kids. She graduated from the school there three years ago.  To be at the same place now, when we were in the same place she was 50 years ago, is sort of a crazy connection…all connected through Manchester’s affiliation with the Church of the Brethren.”

"How long did you grow up in Nigeria?"

“About twelve years, until I was in eighth grade. With the program we were involved in, we went out to Nigeria for four years, then would come back for about six months to a year. So, coming and going the way that we did we were able to do some traveling around Europe and other places as well. I’ve always appreciated that growing up background. It’s given me a different perspective on things by being able to see how so many other people live around the world, especially in that particular part of Africa. That’s one of the reasons I started the January session trips with the guys [on the soccer team], to go to a place completely different than what we’re used to – to just expose them to a completely different culture.”

"What are your hobbies and interests?"

“My hobbies are my work. I enjoy gardening at home, I enjoy sports of all kinds, and I’m an avid reader – mostly magazines, periodicals, and newspapers.  I leave the novel reading to my wife, but yeah, those kind of things. I enjoy helping out in service projects whenever I can. Those are fun activities that I enjoy doing.”

"What is something most people don’t know about you?"

“Something most people don’t know about me? Wow… that’s a good question. Those who know me well know this, of course, but most people wouldn’t know that I’m married to the first woman I ever held hands with besides my sister or my mom. I’m married to a woman that I knew before I even remember knowing her. We grew up together as kids, and it’s just interesting that we ended up together because along the way I was within 16 hours of marrying another person. And that other person called it off, so here I am. It’s a long story, but it’s a cool story and I’m glad it all happened the way it did because I wouldn’t be here if it didn’t. My wife dared me to hold her hand at a movie night one time when we were in third grade and that’s where it all started."