Sports will return to Salem Community College. The Board of Trustees unanimously voted on Nov. 16 to authorize President Michael Gorman to move forward on the restoration of athletics over five years.
Gorman said the fiscal year 2019 budget beginning July 1 will include a salary for a part-time Director of Athletics to lay the foundation for men’s and women’s sports to return starting in the 2019-2020 academic year. Which sports and how many must be determined.
“Life gives you windows of opportunity,” said Gorman. “In this case, I don’t know if it reopens at another time.”
“The time is right,” said Board of Trustees Chair Dorothy Hall. “A year ago, we wouldn’t have been in this position.”
The Board of Trustees’ vote culminated nearly a year of exploration that started with a feasibility study and continued with in-depth discussions at Board meetings over several months. At the same time, SCC engaged high school athletics directors, alumni and community members through meetings and online surveys to analyze the pros and cons, including opportunities and risks.
SCC competed in women’s soccer, men's and women's basketball and baseball through the 2013-2014 academic year. Those funds were reallocated to improve student retention and completion programs. As recently as 2011-2012, SCC also fielded teams in men’s soccer, softball and golf.
Gorman said that the part-time position of Director of Athletics will be posted in early 2018.