Salt Lake Community College’s five intercollegiate sports teams have been very successful over the years, and have competed in many championships and tournaments throughout the country.
Even so, student attendance at SLCC athletic events is extremely low. SLCC Athletics has been unable to fill a large portion of Bruin Arena, despite the fact that students can attend games for free.
“We play in an arena with 5000 seats and we maybe get 50 students at the game,” says Aaron Starks, SLCC’s student body president. “It makes no sense. Our athletics organization is phenomenal.”
There are five intercollegiate sports at SLCC: Women’s Volleyball, Baseball, Women’s Softball, Men’s Basketball and Women’s Basketball.
“Each of our intercollegiate sports are in the championship for the region or win the region and then they go on to the national tournament,” says SLCC Athletic Director Norma Carr. “They have been very successful on a very regular basis.”
Even with the lack of student support, SLCC Athletics continues to succeed.
They have expressed excitement over the current Women’s Volleyball season and the upcoming Basketball season.
“Women’s Volleyball has been to the national championship four times lately and barely lost,” says Carr. “Men’s Basketball made it to the National Championship in 2008 and won the National Championship in 2009. We will continue to succeed.”
Members of SLCC Athletics believe there are a number of factors responsible for the lack of student support for teams with consistently successful records.
“We’re a commuter campus,” says Carr. “We have a hard time getting students to come back.”
SLCC also has to compete with many other organizations in the state.
“We’re a gem that’s lost in the mix off all of this,” says Carr. “We have to compete with the high schools, various pro teams, BYU, Utah and Weber State.”
Even with these considerations, the situation has been very frustrating to members of SLCC Athletics.
They do what they can to advertise their sports by putting up banners, encouraging student athletes to promote athletic events and attempting to reach out to the local media, but they still welcome suggestions that will help them promote their athletic events.
“We’ve had marketing classes study this problem. Nobody can come up with the golden way to get people out and get us known,” says Carr. “If you know the golden way, then let us know.”