Rugby Makes Second Appearance at National Conference of Women Athletic Administrators

Via my e-mail, a NCAA rugby update …

NCAA Initiative Set to Make Second Appearance at NACWAA National Convention
For Immediate Release
October 1, 2007

NCAA Initiative Set to Make Second Appearance at NACWAA National Convention

BOULDER, Colo. – In the second year of the NCAA Initiative, USA Rugby is set to exhibit once again at the National Association of Collegiate Women Athletic Administrators (NACWAA) October 6-9, 2007, in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Some of the most prominent athletic administrators and officials of the NCAA, including athletic directors and Senior Woman Administrators (SWA), will be in attendance.

“Our exposure at the NACWAA is important to USA Rugby’s initiative,” Emerging Sports Program Manager Becky Carlson said. “The SWAs and athletic directors in attendance include some of our biggest advocates, not only in rugby but in women’s athletics in general.”

While the adding of new women’s programs is a delicate situation that requires much research by each institution, the initiative remains confident that more schools will be interested in adding opportunities in the near future.

Though visibility at NACWAA is considered a step forward for the initiative, the Emerging Sports sector has also experienced a great deal of positive exposure generated by the first official NCAA women’s rugby game between West Chester (Penn.) University and Eastern Illinois University on September 15.

“A few of the NACWAA members also have close relations with the Committee on Women’s Athletics (CWA),” Carlson said. “The CWA is a vital committee who determines inclusion of sports on the emerging sports list, and their respective timelines. I have since received much positive feedback from NCAA officials regarding the historical game and their desire to solicit more information on our cause.”

The NACWAA yearly event averages more than 600 people in attendance, with a live auction where USA Rugby will donate t-shirts from the first official game to raise money for NACWAA, as well as the auctioning of a Sony PlayStation and Rugby 2008 PlayStation game. While attendance at NACWAA is important, Carlson admits that the health and continuance of the initiative is dependent upon the assistance of key leaders within the rugby community.

“With the variety of interest across the country, the initiative continues to promote key messages and maintain our contacts in all areas of advocacy for women’s athletics in the NCAA.” Carlson said. “However, our loudest voices in this movement are the female rugby athletes; this is really where the power is.”

To learn more about USA Rugby’s Emerging Sports Initiative and other conferences set for attendance, please contact Becky Carlson at bcarlson@usarugby. org or directly at 303.539.0300 x102.

That last quote intrigues me …

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