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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Intramural attendance declines on campuses

Even+though+the+NE+gym+will+fill+up+with+classes%2C+it+stays+empty+when+it+comes+to+intramural+events.+Participation+in+intramurals+has+been+hard+for+NE+and+NW+campuses.%0APhoto+by+Katelyn+Townsend%2FThe+Collegian
Even though the NE gym will fill up with classes, it stays empty when it comes to intramural events. Participation in intramurals has been hard for NE and NW campuses. Photo by Katelyn Townsend/The Collegian

By Hope Sandusky/nw news editor

It’s been a while since all five TCC campuses came together for an intramural sports tournament — almost four years, in fact.

There was a time when all campuses largely participated in intramural tournaments. Now, some campuses struggle to even get attendance for one game.

Even though the NE gym will fill up with classes, it stays empty when it comes to intramural events. Participation in intramurals has been hard for NE and NW campuses. Photo by Katelyn Townsend/The Collegian
Even though the NE gym will fill up with classes, it stays empty when it comes to intramural events. Participation in intramurals has been hard for NE and NW campuses.
Photo by Katelyn Townsend/The Collegian

For some campuses, intramural participation soars every year. For others, it is seemingly nonexistent.

The explanation for why intramural sports are successful on some campuses and not on others varies.

For NW and NE, participation hasn’t been so great.

“This semester has been a tough semester,” NW intramural coordinator Cassandra Vasquez said. “We have had very low participation this semester compared to other semesters.”

For NE coordinator Laura Bradford, participation on NE has been low as well.

“There has been a decrease in intramural participation,” she said. “We used to have sizable intramural basketball and football seasons, but now turnout is disappointingly small.”

However, SE intramural coordinator Shahzad Nazir said participation hasn’t been an issue.

“I became the coordinator in 2010, and it took a few semesters to build up the number of participants,” he said. “Over the last year, though, the numbers have been pretty even. For example, basketball grew from 23 participants to 92 last spring.”

South intramural coordinator Alyssa Petty voiced a similar trend in intramural participation.

“Our numbers are steady,” she said. “I took over intramurals this semester, and while we don’t have many numbers to benchmark off from, we have increased in some areas.”

All campuses have the same formula for getting the word out for intramurals through fliers, postings and word of mouth.

Nazir attributes word of mouth among students and instructors promoting events in their classes for a boost in participation, and Petty says that also works well on South.

SE student Zach Flaherty said some of his teachers offer extra credit or will excuse an absence if they participate in an intramural event.

“I enjoy sports, though,” he said. “It’s fun to compete with my friends, and there are so many different events throughout the year to try. You don’t have to be an all-star at it. You just have to show up.”

But while South and SE see the benefits of promoting, NE and NW are left with low numbers despite their promotional attempts.

“We have tried different approaches to intramurals and have tried to be as creative as possible,” Bradford said. “We’ve done one-day soccer tournaments and four-week soccer tournaments. We’ve tried different times, days and included as many events as possible, and the turnout is still never there. Have students just not heard that we have intramural games?”

Vasquez says while some events were canceled due to bad weather, she isn’t sure why participation is so low this semester.

“Maybe students don’t see any events going on in the gym and think we aren’t having any events this semester,” she said.

Students have voiced that may be the issue. NW student Bailey Carothers said he was unaware that intramurals were even an activity at TCC.

“They don’t mention it when you go through orientation, and there really isn’t anything promoting it on campus,” he said. “It’s hard because the gym is all the way in the back of the campus. I only go there for class.”

For NE student Noah Reid, there is just no time for intramural sports.

“I work over 30 hours a week, so when I’m on campus, it’s just for classes,” he said. “Intramurals sounds cool, but I just don’t have time for it.”

Bradford believes students’ schedules and work ethics have changed so much that the desire for intramurals is just not there.

“My guess is that the pendulum has swung,” she said. “Swung toward what, I do not know. Maybe more students work after class. In this age of video games and fast foods, maybe students are less comfortable with one-on-one interaction. That’s what I know and what I guess.”

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