Last night, the Yale College Council Athletics subcommittee, a new forum added to the YCC, met for the first time.
The YCC sent campus-wide emails inviting Yale students to participate in yesterday evening’s inaugural meeting. The new committee is comprised of members of the athletic community, YCC representatives and non-athletes who are interested in the future of Yale’s athletic program and want to improve communications between athletes and the YCC.
“The idea is to have a set forum to have on a consistent basis where YCC will be gaining perspective from student athletes on issues that the YCC will be pursuing,” YCC President Danny Avraham ’15 said.
In the committee’s first meeting, members addressed the issue of student attendance at athletic events. According to several student athletes, not all transportation to games or matches is publicized, and thus fan attendance is dependent on word of mouth.
A proposed solution, already in the works with the administration according to Avraham, is to incentivize game attendance. The YCC has proposed having students swipe in to games and, after a certain number of games have been attended, students will be rewarded with various prizes. A similar system has successfully been implemented in other universities, Avraham said.
The YCC subcommittee on athletics also touched on the issue of a growing divide between athletes and non-athletes on campus, which Avraham said is a source of concern for students and the administration.
The committee discussed ideas to mitigate the gap such as the football team’s recent effort to integrate junior athletes into their residential colleges by recommending they remain in on-campus housing.
“We’re working together to help bridge any gaps that may exist between student-athletes and non-athletes,” Avraham said. “We wanted to use this forum as an opportunity to brainstorm.”
Several committee members proposed creating forum discussions relating various academic disciplines to athletics. One proposal suggested a panel discussion between psychologists and athletes regarding the mental stresses undergone by a soccer player throughout a game. The goal of such events would be to draw together a diverse group of students to promote interdisciplinary learning.
Calls for a committee to bridge the gaps between the voices of student athletes and the administration have been around, but until now have not been addressed the founder of The Whaling Crew Andrew Sobotka ’15 said.
“It’s about time that something like this exists,” Sobotka said. “Because there is really no athletic representation in the YCC, I think that it is going to work in favor of both the YCC and the athletics community.”
Members of the YCC expressed similar excitement to gain yet another aspect of input on student life.
Maia Eliscovich ’16, YCC student life chair, noted her enthusiasm for the recently established subcommittee.
“I’m excited to create a platform where athletes can be heard and we can solve general problems to create a more cooperative atmosphere.”
The newly formed committee will meet on a monthly basis.