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Rahul Manoah (Photo by Todd Weddle/Northwest Missouri State University)

Rahul Manoah (Photo by Todd Weddle/Northwest Missouri State University)

Dec. 13, 2019

Connections help Manoah complete degree, launch professional career

Rahul Manoah completed his bachelor’s degree at Northwest Missouri State University applied health and exercise science last summer, but he could hardly wait to return to campus Friday.

Manoah, a native of Chennai, India, who has since launched his professional career in Boston, participated in the University’s December commencement ceremonies to commemorate the completion of his degree.

“It’s been great,” he said of his experience at Northwest. “It’s given me a lot of confidence and helped me to grow as a person. It’s an experience where I’ll always have good memories about it, and I’m thankful for the people around here who helped me to grow.”

Tennis brought Manoah to Northwest. Although it’s not a popular sport in India, Manoah’s father admired German tennis great Boris Becker. Manoah’s father encouraged his son to try playing a sport and a young Rahul gravitated toward tennis.

“Ever since I took up the racket, I decided that’s the sport I wanted to pursue,” he said. “I was very serious about tennis from the age of 10.

Manoah came to the United States in 2015 to play tennis for Tyler (Texas) Junior College. Eventually Bearcat Head Tennis Coach Mark Rosewell recruited him to play at Northwest. Being so far away from his home in India, Manoah found comfort in the people he interacted with at Northwest and appreciated the campus’ diversity.

“It was initially very hard and tough, but once I came to Northwest, I had a lot of friends who made it feel like home,” he said while thanking his parents for the support they offered from afar. “The college feel here is very unique from a lot of different universities I got a chance to visit because of my tennis. Northwest always feels like home because of the people and the staff and teachers, so that’s what really helped me overcome the part of missing home.”

While playing tennis and managing his coursework was “a grind,” Manoah said, he maintained his focus on launching his career.

“The main focus of me choosing (health science) was because it was going to keep me with sports, and I’ve always wanted to be involved with tennis as a coach.”

He found his niche when a Northwest link connected him with the Winchester Country Club near Boston. He landed an internship at the club last summer and parlayed it into full-time work as an assistant tennis professional.  

“I’ve learned a lot in class about the biomechanics of tennis and injury prevention, so it’s been a great fit for me and the job I’m doing now,” Manoah said. “The whole path has been fruitful.”

Manoah says he is enjoying gaining professional experience the Winchester Country Club and hopes to one day further education by pursuing a master’s degree.


Dr. Mark Hornickel
Administration Building
Room 215