By Chelsea Foster
Every college has something to offer to its students, including a good education. However, the weight that is placed on the other amenities is never distributed equally. In some cases, more focus is aimed at the cafeteria food that is provided or the library and classroom technology or possibly even the sports teams.
Here at Simmons College we most definitely focus on the education that we are providing to our students by investing in great professors with real world experience as well as a higher education. Being a small division three school, we do not have an exorbitant amount of money for much else. Sometimes, this leaves our sports teams scrimping for what they can get.
There are currently 10 sports teams associated with Simmons College. Each team has one or two specific seasons in which the Athletic Website should be updating their rosters, reporting the outcomes of the games, meets or contests, but does this really happen as it should?
Over the summer Simmons College decided to do a lot of investing in the athletic department, creating a whole remodel of the staff as well as the building. There has been a new appointed head trainer and as a new replacement trainer, as well as a new volleyball coach, a new lacrosse coach, and a new sports information director for the Athletics Department and all of its sports.
But will all of this revamping actually change how the sports teams are viewed by the Simmons community and viewers of the athletics website? Currently we have six of the ten sports teams in their fall season, but how many of them have news about the team, preseason stories, or even a bio for each athlete?
Not all teams are created equal; though we would all like to think that, it is not close to the truth. Having a team that is important to the Simmons community is a real privilege that not many teams get to feel, and that needs to change. Recognizing all of the teams can only better the overall face of the department.
I asked some teams how they felt about the new changes to the staff and if they felt that their team was benefiting at all from them. Jill Bolduc, a Junior Captain on the Crew team, said, “I was really interested to see all of the new staff added and see how the overall dynamic of the department differed, if at all, from last year.” I then asked her what she thought now that it has been a month or so. “I really think that things are slowly turning around, but there is still a lot on their plate I would have liked to see our page get updated faster than it has been, but on the plus side our team finally got Gatorade water bottles for the first time. I’d say that’s an improvement.”
I also talked to the new Director of Sports Information, Alan Wickström, regarding the process he has in mind for the website and updates on the current fall teams. He said that he was surprised at what he was coming into. He asked about how they have presented teams in the past and have gotten different information regarding each team, which, in a way, makes sense because of the different ways teams compete in sports. However, that was not all of what he meant. Some teams are fully covered, while others do not get pictures taken or even an athletic trainer at events.
Wickström says that he is working hard to change the way the athletics department and pages look and feel. He is organizing himself to cover all of the teams equally without leaving anyone out. I would say that the Athletic pages are headed in the right direction to better represent the student athletes to the Simmons community and parents and friends at home.