Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Friday’s Senior Snowball Slighted Senior Athletes

By EMILY LLERENA ’18

STAFF WRITER

This past weekend marked one of the most anticipated events of a student’s last year at Trinity College: Senior Snowball. However this Snowball was different than it has been in years past. This year the Senior Snowball fell on a Friday instead of Saturday, and in turn excluded nearly all winter athletes from fully participating in the festivities. Historically the majority of winter athletic competitions are held on Fridays and Saturdays. This is why, in the past, Senior Snowball has always fallen on a Saturday — in an attempt to appease as many of the winter athletic schedules as possible.

However it seems that this year the administration and SGA simply threw that goal out the window, and as a result of their poor planning, many seniors were not able to wholly participate in one of the most cherished events of the Trinity experience.

Everyone understands that Snowball is more than just a dance. It is the catalyst that sparks the celebrations of senior year as the fall semester winds down, and students prepare to begin the last few months of their undergraduate experience. That is what makes the tradition of Senior Snowball so poignant. The night mixes nostalgia for the past and anticipation for the future as seniors congregate for first of the dwindling school events they will ever attend as a class. Ask anyone on campus, even the freshmen, and they will be able to tell you how special of a tradition Senior Snowball is. It is a night meant to celebrate and exalt the seniors, so why was a date approved that grievously omitted so many people?

While I am not a senior yet, my status as a junior and a winter athlete has me skeptical about the future given the way this event was planned. The last thing I would want is for this piece to come across as a whining winter athlete who is upset that her basketball schedule infringed on one night of dancing and drinking. If that is the case then I have done my fellow winter athletes an injustice. I understand that it is difficult to plan school events such as this one, and I know that it is impossible to find a date that does not conflict with anyone’s schedule. However winter sports schedules are solidified before the summer, and it frustrates me that more thought was not given to how a Friday Snowball date would without a doubt exclude this group of students.

Trinity athletes are some of the most hardworking, dedicated, and ambitious students on campus, and the message this sends is worrisome to me. Are we going to continue to omit and overlook these students? Do not get me wrong, student athletes know the commitment that is expected of each individual. They know that sacrifices need to be made, and that entails missing events that other students are able to attend. However it is both disappointing and discouraging that a school event made no effort to compromise with the winter sport schedule. If there was an effort made, it was certainly not clear.

The Friday date this weekend excluded nearly all winter sports that a Saturday date would not have, including: Men and Women’s Ice Hockey, Men and Women’s Basketball, Swim and Dive, Indoor Track, and Wrestling. A few of these teams were able to attend, so long as they did not drink, but others were on away trips and could not even attend the dance regardless.

Again, I would like to reiterate that this is not meant to come across as whining. We completely understand that there are sacrifices involved in being part of a sports team. Teams are commitments that you devote yourself to, wholeheartedly, from the start of the season to the end — not to mention the countless hours we spend in preseason. As athletes we love to do this. The senior athletes this past weekend were not upset that they could not drink or party on a Friday night; they were upset that the school did so little to include them in an event meant to celebrate them. They were upset that they dedicate so much of their life to bring pride, spirit, and energy to the Trinity name on their jersey, and that this devotion was overlooked this past weekend.

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