Catawba College's Athletic Programs Undergoing Strategic Planning Review
August 13, 2004
As part of the strategic planning process underway at Catawba College, officials have initiated an overall review and evaluation of the college’s athletic programs. A 15-member task force, consisting of trustees, coaches, alumni, faculty and members of both the Boards of Visitors and Chiefs Club, held its first meeting in July and will meet again in August and September.
According to Senior Vice President Tom Childress, the task force mission will be to examine the current athletic program and its complete operation, including personnel, facilities, budget, scholarship, academic progress, gender equity and level of competitiveness against other institutions. The task force will also serve as a recommending body for the future directions of Catawba athletics regarding conference affiliation, National College Athletic Association (NCAA) divisional status, athletic mascot and other considerations as they arise.
Task force members include trustees Darlene Ball of Greensboro and Claude Hampton of Salisbury; alumni Trent Newell of Mooresville and John Hartpence of Salisbury; members of the Board of Visitors Judy Newman and Bob Wilson, both of Salisbury; members of the Chiefs Club Board Eric Slipp of Salisbury and John Lewis of Mooresville; faculty members Dr. Cheryl Peevy and Joyce Caddell; coaches Craig Turnbull and Elizabeth Graham; Catawba Athletic Director Dennis Davidson; Catawba Chief Financial Officer Chuck Williams; and Catawba Vice President and Dean Barbara Hetrick.
“A well-thought-out strategic plan for athletics will ultimately help strengthen and improve our athletic program overall. This is a process that the NCAA recommends that all institutions undergo on a regular basis,” said Childress. “Some aspects of our program are more visible than others, but our concern is equity and parity for all of our athletes, whether male or female. ”
Childress expects a comprehensive report of the task force’s findings to be made available to Catawba College President Dr. Robert Knott and the College Board of Trustees later this fall.
More than a third of Catawba College students participate in one of the college’s 17 NCAA-sanctioned sports teams. Thanks in part to the structure and self-discipline which these teams provide to Catawba’s student athletes, these students consistently perform well academically. According to a NCAA annual report regarding graduation rates for student athletes, Catawba’s student athletes graduate at a slightly higher rate than all other Catawba students do.