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The William & Mary men’s track team was cancelled this year. In support, the women’s team refuses to compete in the school’s uniform until they are reinstated.
Twenty-six athletes signed a Letter to the administration detailing that they are supporting the men’s team.
In addition to men’s track, gymnastics, swimming, volleyball was to be eliminated. However, they were reinstated to avoid a Title IX lawsuit. The school claims a budget shortfall.
The women’s team feel that the arrival of the decision to cancel the teams was arrived at by dishonest means and they indicated so in the letter to the administration.
“We will begin a campaign of passive resistance to the unfair practices and policies of the College’s administration, including the dishonest manner in which these decisions were arrived at. As such, you can expect to see us front and center voicing our concerns about these issues; you can expect us to take our argument to our student body, to our faculty, and to our alumni; what you should not expect is for us to show up in uniform, representing this institution, until this matter is resolved. A College that does not share these core values is not a College to be valued.”
The school located in Williamsburg, Virginia is the second oldest in the U.S., built in 1693.
In 2019, Tribe Athletics presented the Tribe 2025 plan. Tribe 2025 the athletics department is meant to raise national prominence, undergo significant facilities upgrades, and achieve higher levels of student involvement and spirit. Facility renovations can cost much more than the price of fielding a team of runners.
The Alumni include well-known and well-to-do personalities including comedian, actor and satirist Jon Stewart, actor Glenn Close, James Comey, director of the FBI, and Robert M. Gates former secretary of defense among many others.
The cancellation of the men’s team and the attempt to cancel several other NCAA division 1 sports does not look good for the prestigious school with its long history of academic influence in the U.S.