+ Meet the Chair: Sydney Umeri and Alicia Klinko-Peterson
I am in the College of Arts and Science majoring in Media Studies with the hopes of becoming a broadcast journalist one day. I joined Student Council at the beginning of my second year and was a member of the Athletic Affairs Committee, but now I currently serve as a co-chair for the Athletic Affairs Committee. This committee’s goal is sustain dialogue and bridge the gap between the Athletic Department, Student Council and ultimately students on grounds.
I am a member of the Varsity Women’s Basketball team and a member of three prominent student-athlete governance clubs such as the Student Athletes Committed to Honor (SACH), Student Athletic Advisory Council (SAAC), and Student Athlete Mentors (SAM). Remaining in the athletic sphere. I am also the co-chair of the I AM MORE career planning series that is captured towards athletes and preparing them for life after sport. Lastly, I am the co-editor of the UVa chapter of HerCampus and am a writer and anchor for WUVA, all while maintaining my own blog, Sydney Sundays (http://sydneysundays.wordpress.com).
I am very excited to take on a larger role in Student Council, specifically in the Athletic Affairs Committee, and am excited for the 2015-2016 academic year! Wahoowa!
The Athletic Affairs Committee is responsible for addressing the views and concerns of students regarding athletics at the University, including recreational and amateur athletics as well as varsity athletics.
Past Committee initiatives include:
- March Madness Bracket Competition: Working with UPC, we organized the student body wide bracket competition, which drew over 650 students.
- Basketball Game Day Atmosphere: We are working with Hoo Crew to improve the basketball atmosphere. Last year, we made 70 Mike Scott posters for one of the home games to distribute to students.
- Homecomings 2011 Planning: Our biggest initiative last year was bringing the tradition of Homecomings at UVA back to the student body. We researched other schools’ Homecomings celebrations in preparation for Homecomings Week 2011, and helped plan Coach London at O’hill, the Cavalier Combine, Cavalier Carnival Cookout. and the Cookout on the Lawn.
- Football Shuttle Service: We are launching a football shuttle service to take students from 14th street and Rugby Road areas to the stadium on game day.
- Water Program at Football Games: In conjunction with several other groups around Grounds and the athletics department, we have established a program to provide water for students at home football games when the heat index exceeds a critical threshold.
- Fill the Hill – UVA Football Marketing Team: We worked with Hoo Crew to launch a team of students that will work to increase student excitement for our home football games. Fill the Hill was very successful in its first year and has started strong for the 2012 season.
- Lawn Tailgating: We reviewed and evaluated the Lawn tailgating experience in conjunction with Residence Life and the Office of the Dean of Students. We will continue to try to find new uses for the Lawn on game days.
- Player, Coach, and Student Interaction: One of our primary goals in the past has been to increase opportunities for students to get to know players and coaches. We continue to look for additional ways to get this to happen and look to expand on our successful UVA Football Night at O’hill in Fall 2010, featuring Coach London himself.
- Virginia Club Sports Council: We created a new Club Sports Council which seeks to promote Club Sports at the University of Virginia by offering organization, centralization, advertisement, and logistical support.
- Reviewing the Football Gameday Script: We worked with the Athletics Department to review the game day script and determine if there was a better order of events leading up to kickoff to capture student enthusiasm. We also changed some of the game day music, including the addition of 300 Violin Orchestra.
- Student Survey for Presidential Search: We are preparing to contribute to the recruitment of the next University president by presenting a comprehensive review of the student experience in athletics.
- Improving Sustainable Practices in Athletics: The committee is partnering with the University Unity project and the Environmental Sustainability committee to ensure that our games are as ‘green’ as possible. Recently, the committee has worked to promote the EPA’s Football Gameday Challenge, a competition in which University of Virginia ranked first in the ACC in pounds of materials recycled on per-capita attendance.
- Overturning the Sign Ban: when conversations with the Athletics Department ended, the committee sent thousands of emails to the student body, asking them to wear blue to the next football game in a demonstration against the sign ban. The ban was quickly repealed.
- Co-sponsorships with Hoo Crew: the committee continues to work with Hoo Crew to increase turnout and student involvement at University sporting events.