Shelia Evans is one of the veteran UTC of Paola students and has become an integral part of the school! She and her son Matthew first signed up for classes in May 2012, after losing her husband and his father earlier that year. This was a significant time of transition for the two of them and participation in Taekwondo provided them with a focus and sense of purpose, which helped them begin the next phase of their lives. Later in 2012, Shelia and Matthew attended their first tournament in Chicago with several other students, which they greatly enjoyed, and since then have participated in other local and out-of-state events. Shelia has volunteered a significant amount of time to assist during special events and is always willing to lend a hand and goes the extra mile to welcome others to the school family!!
Shelia is very proud of Matthew, who has a disability and has flourished at the school! She has also accomplished a great deal herself and believes that her confidence has increased over the past several years, to the point of feeling comfortable with her ability to defend herself, if necessary. Shelia also feels that Taekwondo has increased her stamina and endurance, which is important to her, due to the significant health scare that she had several years ago after experiencing a brain aneurysm. She considers herself very fortunate to be alive and have the opportunity to live such a full life! In addition to her work at the school and on-going dedication to her son as she encourages him to achieve his goals and increase his independence, Shelia recently started working part-time at Fed Ex and encouraged Matthew to apply for a position too. This new employment venture has challenged both of them to push themselves a little harder and Matthew has had the opportunity to experience a new sense of pride and accomplishment.
Shelia is very proud of achieving her 1st degree black belt in 2015 and continues to take classes and assists with instructing some of the younger students. She would like to continue perfecting her forms and participating on the Demo Team. In addition, she plans to test for her 2nd degree black belt this October! Shelia is quite a lady and deserves a huge THANK YOU for all of the contributions she makes to UTC of Paola.