Top Ten Things to Know About Vassar Athletics
By Ellen Butler
Unigo Campus Rep at Vassar College
1. We don’t have a football team, and so we think it’s very cute to tell everyone that our football team has been undefeated since 1861 (our founding). Makes sense when you remind yourself of that whole “all-female” part of our past.
2. Even though we’re a Division III school, athletics can take up a LOT of time. The wisest way to stay on top of your life? As John Scott, an ’08 graduate and Vassar rugby player put it, “Always consult profs way in advance to make special arrangements when necessary. School waaaayyyy takes priority.” Teddy Weiss, varsity captain of the women’s squash team, adds that, “Coaches generally respect that academics come first at Vassar, though they equally expect athletes to return that respect by working hard on the field.”
3. The social reputation of athletes is recognized as, er, unique from most social reputations on campus, though different people have different thoughts about what that is. Katama Martellucci, a senior lacrosse player, said, “The teams can fill in for the lack of Greek system on campus as far as parties go.” John puts it differently, saying, “There are some not-so-flattering stereotypes, sure. Baseball guys suck, for example.” Freshman girls, take heed: be cautious.
4. Teamcest is a bad idea. Teamcest (teem-sest) n.: when members of the same team decide to hook up/start dating/etc. This happens enough that someone like me—that is, a non-athlete—is well aware of it happening. It can create serious friction amongst teammates. Some people keep it a secret, but this campus is small. It’s difficult to keep anything secret around here.
5. Being an athlete is not an automatic ticket to popularity here. Some people have no interaction with athletics on this campus at all.
6. “Vassar excels in non-traditional sports- squash, rugby, volleyball, Frisbee,” said Teddy. “We’ve also got some great runners, fencers, and swimmers, to boot.”
7. Many of our teams happily welcome walk-ons. Crew and Rugby practically solicit you to join their teams.
8. We have a Quidditch Team. Seriously. And no, I have no idea how they get over the “flying on broomsticks” barrier.
9. “Whether you like it or not, your team is your family,” said Katama. “You won’t always get along. You won’t always want to see them. But they will always be there for you.”
10. As with most things on this campus, athletics are what you make of it. You can join a varsity team, or you can join an IM team for fun. Or you can just go to the games and show your support. Or not.