Hi there everyone! If you’re in the Olympia area, hopefully you are staying warm, dry, and active in this wonderfully snowy weather we’ve been having. Recently, I’ve been jittery with excitement for one reason in particular: the fencing club is now an official club at the Evergreen State College! I want to take this space to briefly describe to process and means by which we were able to accomplish this.
As Fall quarter was getting started, I was walking through the library lobby one day and saw a flyer for a “Fencing Meeting” that was going to be taking place in the College Activities Building (CAB) in a few days. As a fencer who has competed at Junior Olympics (Denver and Hartford) and North American Cups several years ago (Sacramento and Richmond) I was curious to see who was heading this up. Also, I have been taking a break from the sport due to financial reasons and physical injury. Yet, this was incredibly exciting for me, and I was looking forward to the meeting.
A few days later, I met with an incredibly sharp freshman by the name of Matt. He had been fencing for over a year and was eager to continue on in college. He was organized, well spoken, and had a good knowledge of what he thought needed to be done. Matt, myself, and two others met frequently throughout the quarter: we formed a mission statement, drafted budgets, met with instructors, held council with CRC (College Recreation Center) administrators, among other bureaucratic and practical tasks that needed to be completed to get this club started. Eventually, our mailing list grew to over 20 people, few of whom had ever fenced before yet were excited to learn. All we needed now was money to provide for equipment for our club members. This was easily the most daunting part, especially since fencing equipment is so expensive. If you may recall from above, it is one of the reasons I took a break in the first place. Providing equipment for our members was, to me and our core leadership, a cornerstone of the club: we needed to make this an opportunity for people who could not afford it.
When Matt and I returned from break, we met with the S&A Board, which is comprised by students and a faculty supervisor to award funds and advice to student activities. We had two spokes people, as well as myself and several others sitting in on the meeting to show support for the club. After the discussion and debate from the Board, the final verdict came forth…
We were awarded two thousand dollars to start The Evergreen State College Fencing Club.
This was HUGE for us: after months of prep and coordination, we finally reached our goal. Currently, we are ordering equipment and are excited to start some bouts in the next week or two. If you are on campus when we are practicing, come on down!