Posted on February 10, 2023 by Amanda Cerreto

Jennifer Pfieffer and soccer team

Jennifer Pfieffer and soccer team

February 10, 2023 — In December of 2022, the U.S. House passed the equal pay bill, which ensures equal compensation for US women competing in international events. The legislation was largely driven by members of the US Women’s soccer team. This huge step for women’s athletics was greeted with enthusiasm by many – especially Jennifer Pfeiffer ’00.

As the Executive Director of the Alabama Soccer Association, Pfeiffer has become accustomed to being the only woman at the table. “It shouldn’t be a negative if you’re the only woman in the room,” she said. “I want to help show women how much opportunity there is in the world of athletics.”

When Pfeiffer enrolled in the kinesiology department as an undergraduate, she had no idea that her future career could stay so close to her passion for soccer. Growing up in the north, soccer was seasonal – but here in San Antonio, it was a year-round sport. She joined adult leagues and became exposed to the local club programs – and eventually leveraged that into jobs.

Jennifer PfeifferOne of her first soccer jobs as an undergrad was with Saint Mary’s Hall as a girl’s middle school coach hired by Brian Kaestner, a great mentor to Pfeiffer. “Because of finding my mentor in San Antonio, my career just kept going with soccer,” Pfeiffer said. “I moved to Austin to work with Warriors Soccer Club - now LoneStar - and then with UT Austin as a goalkeeper coach. Being in Texas offered opportunities as a career soccer coach.”

Pfeiffer kept rising in the ranks in the soccer world, becoming a college coach, professor and finally to the executive director of Alabama Soccer Association. “Soccer pretty much took me wherever I went across the country,” she said.

In addition to her job, Pfeiffer is a member of the HCAP Alumni Leadership Council. For her, it was a decision that took a lot of careful thought – and she takes her role seriously.

“Women need strong role models. We need to be able to pull each other up and pull the next generation up,” she said. “Serving on the council will hopefully make more student athletes aware of what’s available.”

Looking back on her time at UTSA, Pfeiffer remains grateful for the people that helped her along the way. “I was a Yankee from the North, and people at UTSA were so patient with me,” she said. “As a transfer from another state and another school, the administration helped me navigate the curriculum that worked for me.”

Pfeiffer stresses the importance of networking at UTSA, noting that it helped her build a career she didn’t think would be possible. “Have discussions with people that are in the chair you want to be in,” she said. “There are so many roles and opportunities that are looking for athletes or athletic-minded people. UTSA will give you the information, you just have to want it and go after it.”

— Amanda Cerreto