WCC Athletes Now Eligible for Athletic Scholarships

Westchester Community College’s Department of Athletics and Physical Education is offering athletic scholarships to students involved in the eleven intercollegiate athletic teams for various sports that WCC Sponsors, according to information from the school’s athletic website.

The school’s athletic programs comprise of men’s soccer, female volleyball, men’s baseball, men’s cross country and women’s cross country in the fall, both men and women’s’ basketball in the winter, and men’s baseball, female softball, and golf for the spring semester.

According to school’s athletic website, Westchester sports teams are a part of the region fifteen of the National Junior Athletic Association (NJCAA) and Mid-Hudson Conference. While the majority of sports teams at WCC compete on a Division III level, men’s basketball is ranked as a Division I sport, while baseball is ranked under Division II. There is no ranking for men or female bowling.

However, WCC provides its athletes with the opportunity to excel in their respective sports through showcasing their talents, and the school is proud to announce that students who play division one and two sports are now being granted the opportunity to receive scholarship to aid in their educational studies, according to the school website.

Michael Belfiore, Director of Athletics at WCC is very enthusiastic about the opportunity being given to student athletes as he emphasized the qualifications necessary to gain access to this particular scholarship.

“Only our division one and two sports are eligible for athletic scholarships and if there is someone we see fit that can qualify for an athletic scholarship, we can offer them some athletic aid based on that,” Belfiore said. “We have it set up through the foundation. The only change is that we are adding men’s and women’s basketball to the sports that we are able to offer a scholarship.”

Belfiore went on to explain the rules and regulations regarding the new athletic scholarships, according to the NJCAA.

“It is limited to only certain sports because of our rules that oversee the different divisions in college sports. We are governed by the NJCAA, that’s our national governing body and their rules stipulate that division three sports can’t get any aid, so most of our teams are division three,” Belfiore said. “They are very modest scholarships, they are only available to athletes and there is no age limit.”

WCC student, Krissy Dankwaa disagrees with the notion to reward athletes by granting them scholarship opportunities because the college should prioritize academics over sports.

“I feel WCC should not give athletic scholarships to students because college is for academics, sports come afterwards,” said Dankwaa. “You do not get paid to go to school. They are already getting a free ride through college with the scholarships.”

Another WCC student, Elina Dufour believes it is a good idea but it must be given as a privilege and not as a right to students to prevent the opportunity from being wasted.

“I think that it’s good to give scholarships to athletes but there has to be some limitations based on number of years the person practised the sport or how well they perform. Otherwise people might take advantage,” Dufour said. ”Being smart isn’t only about being good at math, there are different types of intelligence. Just like some people are better at math, well some are better in sports, but they must earn it.”

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