Jesse Carpenter returns for his second season as head coach of the Saint Michael's women's volleyball program in 2017. A long-time local coach, Carpenter became head coach following four years and two stints as a volunteer assistant with the team.
In 2016, the roster was dominated by nine underclassmen, none of which had previously held key roles on the team. Two ended up being among the top three on the team in kills, and another platooned as a setter. Saint Michael's set a school record for digs per set (20.2) thanks greatly due to a veteran defensive corps while recording the second highest kill and assist per set figures in the past four seasons. Carpenter earned the first two victories of his college coaching career on Sept. 10, as the Purple Knights picked up a pair of 3-0 victories over Dominican (N.Y.) College and Felician (N.J.) University. Saint Michael's later nabbed a 3-1 win over Southern New Hampshire University on Oct. 11 for its first Northeast-10 Conference victory.
In his return to a volunteer assistant role at the College, Saint Michael's went 12-12 during the 2015 season, with its per-set averages for kills (11.5), assists (10.7) and blocks (3.0) each among the top three figures the Purple Knights had produced over the past 20 years. Saint Michael's remained in contention for its first postseason since 1995 until the final weekend of the regular season. In addition to coaching in 2015, Carpenter volunteered with the Saint Michael's program between 2002 and 2004, including as the Purple Knights picked up a dozen victories in 2003.
Carpenter was also an assistant coach for the University of Vermont women's volleyball team for three years before its dissolution following the 2001 season. In both of his college positions, Carpenter helped create and implement practice plans, as well as identify areas for in-match adjustments as an integral member of small coaching staffs. He was also a Green Mountain Volleyball clinic instructor for five years.
As a player, Carpenter was a standout outside and middle hitter for UVM's men's club team, being named most valuable player and an all-star in the New England Collegiate Volleyball League at various times in his career. Since graduating in 2001 with a degree in sports nutrition, Carpenter has continued playing semiprofessionally, including helping a Vermont all-star team take second place at the Northeast Regional Championship.