« Back

BTSP Wishes Canaan Good Luck

BTSPhilly   |   Oct 5, 2016

Beat the Streets wants to wish Canaan Bethea a huge congratulations on landing an assistant coaching job at George Mason University. Canaan has been working with Beat the Streets for almost 3 years now. What started as just volunteering to move mats for a tournament turned into much more. Before he left, he was serving as the Assistant Director of the Mentoring Program. Canaan was also instrumental in getting a Beat the Streets program up and running in his home town of Trenton. As a youth growing up in Trenton, Canaan and his brothers had to trek down to Princeton for practice which is what inspired him to start a program in the city. “I think every inner city area could use a Beat the Streets program. What made me want to bring one to Trenton was the lack of opportunity for kids to get involved in wrestling. I was lucky that I had someone to drive me to Princeton when I was younger, but a lot of kids don’t have that support. Bringing Beat the Streets to Trenton was big because it exposed a lot of kids to the sport and gave them opportunities they wouldn’t normally get.” In addition to his work with Beat the Streets, Canaan was also a resident athlete at the Pennsylvania Regional Training Center. He competes in the 86-kilogram freestyle weight class, and plans on continuing to train while coaching at George Mason. Canaan is one of 9 children, and one of 5 brothers to wrestle for the University of Pennsylvania. During his career he was a 2 time NCAA qualifier, falling one match short of All American status his senior year. He was also an EIWA runner-up. He graduated with a degree in Psychology and was part of the African American Arts Alliance, the Black Men United Organization, and was a peer counselor in the Upward Bound program. Canaan’s older brother Jaaziah wrestled at George Mason, so he was familiar with the coaches and the program and felt that it was a natural choice for him. “I've known the program for a while, and I came to matches when my brother was here. To have coaches that have so much experience that's all you can ask for and I'm excited to do what I can to help the program.” Canaan plans on pursuing a master’s degree in psychological counseling which he wants to use to help others. “Growing up with 9 children in a homeschool environment, I always had a brother there 24-7. There was always a mentality of supporting one another and helping each other as much as we could. I think that’s always stuck with me.” Canaan is unsure if he will remain a wrestling coach after finishing his degree, but he knows he will always remain close to the sport in some capacity.