Duquesne President Ken Gormley has announced a new initiative to create ongoing support for club sports at Duquesne. Gormley directed that a $1.1 million unrestricted estate gift, provided anonymously by an alumnus, can be used to create an endowment to provide a perpetual funding source for club sports—an activity in which a large segment of Duquesne undergraduate students participates. 

An endowment of that size will yield roughly $45,000 per year, in perpetuity, to support the 14 club sports at the University. The goal, Gormley stated, is to broaden that endowment over time through additional gifts and donations to expand its impact even further. 

Large numbers of students participate in club sports at the University. Duquesne club sports include baseball, field hockey, ice hockey, men’s and women’s lacrosse, men’s and women’s soccer, swimming, tennis, track, women’s volleyball and wrestling.

“Duquesne students are actively engaged in athletic clubs,” said Gormley. “Our educational philosophy is to develop the whole person. The discipline, leadership and fitness routine that students gain through club sports and related activities aligns perfectly with our overall learning goals. I’m thrilled that we can make this significant investment in our student activities at such a perfect time, as we strive to allow students to reach for bigger goals.”

Club sports compete against other colleges or universities but not as a Division 1 scholarship sports in the Atlantic 10 conference. Intramural sports are robust as well, with students vying against other campus teams in a variety of more pick-up style competitions. 

“This gift is a game changer for our students who participate in club sports,” said Doug Frizzell, senior vice president of student life at Duquesne. “Right now, as student organizations, our club sports programs have only limited funding from a pool that also supports the roughly 250 to 275 other student organizations each year. The club sports organizations typically have additional needs, and students have to fundraise for them. So, having dedicated funding for this purpose is a wonderful addition.” 

Several of the University’s club sports are quite competitive. Duquesne Club Baseball participates in Division III athletic competition; Duquesne Club Field Hockey is part of the National Field Hockey League; Club Wrestling partners with the National Collegiate Wrestling Association; and Duquesne Club Ice Hockey is a member of the American Collegiate Hockey Association. 

In all, more than 300 of Duquesne’s 5,200 undergraduate students participate in club sports, and another 700 participate in intramural sports. Many prominent alumni participated in club sports or intramurals during their time at Duquesne, describing that experience as being a positive factor in their overall success. 

“My time with our longstanding club hockey team and my work with student government have shown me how much club sports matter to so many students,” said Claudio Simione, president of the Student Government Association at Duquesne. “We’re grateful for this show of support from President Ken Gormley and the University. It will do more than support teams—it will provide students opportunities for growth, stress relief and wellbeing while doing something they love.”

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and horizon-expanding education. A campus of nearly 8,000 graduate and undergraduate students, Duquesne prepares students by having them work alongside faculty to discover and reach their goals. The University's academic programs, community service and commitment to equity and opportunity in the Pittsburgh region have earned national acclaim.

It's time for bigger goals
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September 07, 2023