Perks of Playing a Varsity Sport in College

If there is one thing I did right in my first year of college it was joining a varsity sports team.

Growing up I was constantly involved with sports, when the time came to go to college I wasn’t ready to end my athletic career. After falling in love with rugby in the 9th grade, my goal was to pursue it in post-secondary – and I did! To be honest, the excellent varsity opportunities and exceptional athletic training was one (of many) reasons I chose St. Lawrence College!

There are a variety of recreational and varsity sports offered at all three St. Lawrence College campuses; sports range from Indoor and Outdoor Soccer and Cross Country to Ice Hockey, Basketball, Badminton, Golf and Rugby. There are so many of internal and external benefits and perks of playing for the college! Read below to find out how you can benefit from joining an SLC varsity team:

New friends and family: Joining a team allows you to instantly meet new people that:

  1. you have something in common with, and
  2. you’ll be spending a lot of time with!

Get to know your team, go on team building outings and engage with your teammates on and off the field! You team will then become your friends and then they will become your family; a support group that is there for you when you are going through a rough patch in school or in life.

School involvement: Varsity sports allow you to get involved right away. Several teams may start practices and training before the school semester even starts – which is great because it allows you to make friends right away! Athletes are also sometimes recruited to help promote events and help boost school spirit! This opens up the door for new volunteer and potential job opportunities. SLC Athletics loves when athletes wear their SLC Colours with pride!

Resume Builder: “Being on a varsity team is a crucial aspect on a resume and should be emphasized. It shows incredible time management skills to juggle the demands of a varsity team while being a full-time student, plus employment. Also shows that you can work well with a group and are very goal focused!” –Kevin Biggs, Sports Information Office.  (Quick, write that down for your resume!)

Free Stuff: You. Get. So. Much. Free. Stuff! For example, my team got sweaters, jackets, shirts, water bottles, tank tops, and pants (we had to pay for the last two things, but they were optional) all in one season! Transportation to away games is free and you get meal money! You also get free fitness centre memberships and insurance through your tuition!

Organization and Time Management: Balancing school, sports, work and life is tough – but it is 100% doable! The St. Lawrence College athletic staff and coaching teams know that school comes first. In my experience, having weekly practices and training sessions have kept me extremely busy AND organized with school and work! All while still being able to keep a social life (I promise). You will learn to prioritize and use your time efficiently. If you are struggling with time management and/or school work, there are so many resources available to help with organization and academic counselling. You can get help by asking your coaches or athletic staff, and visiting resources such as program tutors and the Math and Writing Centre on all three campuses!

Fitness Training: Each campus’ fitness centres is a great place to train. Along with the weekly practices, some teams require fitness training, whether it be indoor or outdoor! What I’m trying to say is, YOU WILL GET JACKED! Varsity sports require fit, strong, athletic individuals on their teams! So don’t worry if you aren’t fit or in shape now, through practices and training you will get in shape, and feel great!

Winning: If you are good, and if your team is dedicated and you all work hard, maybe… just maybe, you’ll win an OCAA medal! Medals are nice because they show that you have accomplished something challenging and that you are part of a great team! There are also opportunities to win individual awards such as Athlete of the Week or athletic academic awards (also good for a resume)!

If you are even slightly considering participating in a club or team in college, join a sports team. If not varsity, try a recreational, intramural, club, or house league! The benefits of playing for your school outweigh any fear you may have about trying out for a sport. Playing sports in general is a great way to build a community, make great friends, get out of the house, stay healthy, and relieve any stress that school or life throws at you!

Check out the try-out and training camp schedule for all Varsity teams here!

-Ashley Dubois, 

Tight-head Prop, Women’s Rugby, St. Lawrence College