In June of 2020, Mary Shimko '14 became just the second head coach in Brandeis women's soccer history, taking over for Denise Dallamora, who has been at the helm since 1980.
Shimko was been an assistant coach at Brandeis for the previous three seasons, earning a promotion to associate head coach in February 2020. With her on the sidelines, the Judges are 35-17-4, reaching two NCAA Division III tournaments. The Judges advanced to the second round in 2017 and were knocked out in the first round in 2018. Over the past three seasons, Brandeis has produced eight All-New England selections, 14 All-University Athletic Association honorees, 12 Academic All-UAA team members, and two student-athletes selected as Phi Beta Kappa. Shimko has also been instrumental in developing a leadership development curriculum for student-athletes. In 2023, she completed the United Soccer Coaches Coach Credentialing Program, to help coaches gain the self-awareness and practical skills necessary to develop mastery as a professional collegiate team leader and manager.
In 2020-21, Brandeis placed two women on the CoSIDA Academic All-District team, Mackenzie Smith '21 and Juliette Carreiro '22. They also started a program to develop philanthropy and giving back to the community in the spring of 2021.
After her first season on the field was suspended due to COVID-19, in her first season on the field, Shimko led Brandeis to a national ranking during the 2021 season. The Judges returned to the NCAA Division III tournament, reaching the second round with a come-from-behind victory over Farmingdale State in the opening round. Brandeis was ranked 21st in the final United Soccer Coaches national poll and 24th in the final D3Soccer.com poll. Juliette Carreiro '22 earned All-America honors on the field from the United Soccer Coaches, and in the classroom from CoSIDA as an Academic All-American. In 2022, Carreiro became just the seventh two-time CSC (formerly CoSIDA) Academic All-American in Brandeis history. She was also named Brandeis's nominee for the 2023 NCAA Woman of the Year.
Shimko was a four-year starter for the Judges at midfield, serving as a captain as a junior and senior. She helped the Judges to three postseason appearances, including a trip to the Elite Eight of the NCAA tournament in 2012 – at the time the best post-season performance in school history. Shimko was a three-time Academic All-UAA selection was the recipient of the James McCully '86 Award, which is presented to seniors who best exemplify the character, dedication, and good sportsmanship that were exhibited by inaugural Brandeis Hall of Famer McCully.
Shimko had previous collegiate coaching experience at Smith College in 2014 and 2015 and at the College of the Holy Cross in 2016 before rejoining Dallamora on the sidelines. In addition to her collegiate coaching experience, she has also served as a club head coach at the New England Football Club and at Global Premier Soccer in Waltham. She received her USSF C coaching license in 2020.
Shimko graduated from Brandeis in 2014 with a B.A. in business and received her M.S. in exercise and sport sciences from Smith in 2016.