Elizabeth Cady Stanton (one of my personal heroes) once said that "fifty, not fifteen is the heyday of life." I think that you can find a personal heyday at any age, and that's what I aim to help my clients do.  I specialize in working with clients who are in a major life transition (a job search, career change, starting a business, managing a new challenge at work or in your personal life) or feeling stuck on projects and goals. I’ll help you find your way forward. My job is to help you identify your priorities and values as well as your obstacles and challenges.  We will work together to develop an action plan to achieve your goals on your own terms and your own timetable.

Coaching is investment of your time and resources to build a more satisfying and meaningful future for yourself, and my role as coach is to be a discerning listener, a supportive cheerleader, a wise advisor, and a gentle but firm accountability partner.  I can help you gain clarity, visualize the future you want, identify and overcome barriers, and stay motivated.

I specialize in working with two types of clients:

  • People navigating transitions--people who have decided that something major in their lives has to shift—a new career, a new business, better work-life balance, more effective skills for coping with major responsibilities, or finding strategies to better align their work with their values and goals. They may be coping with an empty nest or an unexpected change like loss of job or loved one, or it may be a welcome change like a long-awaited promotion. Either way, these clients need help in navigating the transition—the inner process of coping with change.

  • Clients with an academic background: graduate students, independent scholars, faculty members, and administrators. I help these clients with pre-tenure career management, mid-career transitions, leadership development, job searches inside and outside the academy, shifts to administrative and leadership roles, managing relationships with departments and institutions, balancing the demands of teaching, research, and service, navigating the publication process, and aligning your career path with your goals and values.

Photo by Carroll Foster

Photo by Carroll Foster

Heyday Coaching LLC was founded by Melissa Walker, Ph.D. Melissa has more than thirty years experience in coaching, mentoring, and teaching.   After a career in institutional advancement, she earned her Ph.D. in U.S. and women's history at Clark University and joined the faculty at Converse College in Spartanburg, South Carolina. There, she focused on projects that empower women and on the study of past women's efforts to become autonomous and fulfilled human beings.  She served as a member of the president’s senior leadership team and led numerous initiatives on campus as well as serving as president of two national and international professional associations. A compelling public speaker, writer, and coach, Melissa brings the insights from her research, teaching, leadership, and mentoring into her work with coaching clients. She attained her coaching training from Mentor Coach, a program accredited by the International Coach Federation.  

See Melissa's academic c.v. or her resume.