The 2014-15 season has been great for Goucher athletics. The men’s soccer team made history as they were semifinalists in the Landmark Conference Playoffs, the women’s basketball Team is off to their best start since 1993, the men’s swim team is 6-1, and the women’s field hockey team finished above .500 for the first time since 1995. In addition, many teams at Goucher are traveling to play their sports during winter and spring breaks. Notably, the women’s lacrosse team is going to North Carolina, both swim teams and men’s basketball are going to Puerto Rico, and the field hockey team is going to Argentina.
It has also been a great year financially for Goucher Athletics. Companies, such as Chick-fil-a, Eyre Bus, Tour and Travel, and MedStar Sports Medicine have contacted Goucher for corporate sponsorships. The Blue and Gold Society, an Alumni outreach program, has been an integral part of the funding of athletics at Goucher. Many sports teams have also been fortunate enough to receive special donations directly from alumni. For example, the equestrian team received over a half of a million dollars from an anonymous bequeath that is exclusively used to fund the Equestrian team.
The athletics department as a whole receives an operating budget from the college that is then divided among the different teams. Men’s basketball Head Coach Leonard Trevino, and associate athletic director meets with each coach and then determines how much the team requires. This is usually determined by squad size. However, Trevino also considers the needs and wants of each coach. Teams are also able to accrue additional funds, via the Blue and Gold Society, through independent fundraising, or through the players themselves. The swim team, for instance, uses a little bit of their budget to pay for their trip to Puerto Rico; however, it is up to the students to cover the remaining cost. The Field Hockey team, on the other hand, did a majority of their fundraising through pledges from alumnae/i, hosting tournaments, and bringing Color Me Rad to campus to cover their $50,000 trip.
Despite Goucher’s ability to finance twenty teams, according to Operations Manager, Nina Zacharias, “we do have a short fall every year.” This means that over the course of the academic and athletic year, the Athletics Department has more expenses than the college provides. In order to ease the expenses, the Blue and Gold Society holds an annual golf-outing, the Department sells memberships to the pool, and rents the pool out to the North Baltimore Aquatic Club. Other financial assistance comes from the generous donations of the Blue and Gold Society.
Athletics are a great source of pride for colleges across the nation. Even at Goucher, it is positive to see crowds of students supporting the Gophers. Sam Davis ’15 commented on what it means to be a fan of everything Goucher, “We want to make sure everyone feels super supported and understands that we’re gonna be there for them.” Morgan Richter ‘16 added, “We love it when there’s a full crowd. There’s nothing better than stepping up to the block and hearing the cheering of your friends.” Goucher College is very fortunate to be able to continue to do great things through athletics and it is largely due to the school, the alumni, and the families of students.