Coach Halper has been at Worcester State since the summer of
1999 when he was named the women's track and field coach where he
also assisted with the men’s program. With the beginning of
the 2002-2003 season, Halper assumed duties as head coach of both
the men’s and women’s programs. His experience and
knowledge brings to the college, the impetus which is needed as
Worcester State makes the effort to raise the level of the program
to new heights and successes.
Halper had served as head coach of the Holy Cross women’s cross country/track and field programs since their inception in 1976 until June 1999 when Holy Cross decided to make the position full time. Unable to accept the position due to previous teaching obligations, Halper was available to join the staff at Worcester State. Halper’s squads have long been recognized and respected among their competitors. In his twenty-three years at Holy Cross, he had helped to make the Crusader cross country and track programs among the strongest and most successful in the East. His cross-country teams have made four national championship appearances, finishing second on two occasions. His track and field program produced several nationally ranked relays and a number of top ten All New England Championship finishes both indoor and outdoor including a second place finish in the 1984 Outdoor season.
While coaching ten All-Americans and having his teams accumulate a long list of titles, Halper has earned several individual honors as well. In 1982 and 1983, he was named the NCAA Division II Northeast Region Coach of the Year. He was also one of the founders and has served as commissioner of the New England Intercollegiate Cross-Country and Track and Field Association. In addition, he has served as a member of NCAA, ECAC and EAIAW cross country and track committees and the Massachusetts Track Officials Association.
A respected lecturer at camps and clinics, Halper is particularly well known for his expertise in event specific hydrotraining, hydrotherapy, and speed training. His philosophy for coaching in the middle and long distances are also topics at clinics and camps. Halper’s coaching interests also extend beyond Worcester State. He has been active in the Bay State Games since its beginning and the previously held U.S. Youth Games. Locally, he helped to create the Worcester Track Club to benefit youth and “open” athletes in the city and surrounding communities. Halper has also done graduate work in sports medicine. A former trackman at Rutgers University and a native of Middletown, NY, Al remains an avid runner and competitor on the road and track from time to time. Al has two children, a son, Sean and a daughter, Marisa. He resides in Worcester, MA.