Sun Devil Women’s Triathlon
June 24, 2015
A long radio silence is usually accompanied by a lame explanation that I was “busy” or whatever, but for once, I have a good excuse for being absent from this blog for a couple of months now! There is exciting stuff going on in the world of collegiate triathlon. If you haven’t been following along, here is the reader’s digest version: NCAA declared triathlon an emerging sport for women in January 2014. In December 2014, USA Triathlon offered $2.6 million in grants to schools beginning NCAA programs, and Arizona State University (where I am currently enrolled to earn my Master’s degree) was one of eight schools to receive the grant in April 2015! So why does this give me a good excuse to be absent from my blog?
In December, when USA Triathlon announced the grants they were offering, I happened to be securing my placement for my practicum (practical experience) project as part of the requirement for my Master’s. I approached the Senior Women’s Administrator for Sun Devil Athletics and asked her to mentor me in hopes I could work up a mock proposal and maybe actually get in front of some decision makers with the idea. Fast forward a few months and a couple of important (and stressful!) meetings, and my project had become something very real! The athletic director at ASU, Ray Anderson, is making moves all over the place, so when I pitched the idea of a women’s triathlon program, he jumped on it! As soon as Mr. Anderson gave the go ahead, Sun Devil Women’s Triathlon became history in the making.
I have been working with Julie Miller, the Director of Major Gifts for Sun Devil Athletics, to raise awareness of the program and also raise funds to get the program started. We need to raise $3.5 million to make this emerging sport a reality. These funds will sustain the program for 10 years while it is in the emerging sport phase.
This is an extremely exciting time for the sport of triathlon. Not only will this be the first time that triathlon will be recognized at the NCAA level, but I believe it will bring a lot of visibility to the draft legal (Olympic format) side of the sport.
With ASU being the first major Division I institution to add triathlon as a women’s varsity sport, we are truly making history! If you have any interest in learning more about Sun Devil Women’s Triathlon or getting involved, please contact me — we want this to be a community driven project and appreciate any and all support!!