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USA Triathlon and USA Triathlon Foundation today announced the first eight collegiate institutions that will benefit from a share of the $2.6 million, multi-year Women’s Triathlon Emerging Sport Grant, created to drive the establishment of NCAA women’s varsity triathlon programs.
This funding program—the first of its kind ever offered to an NCAA Emerging Sport—is being provided by the USA Triathlon Foundation, with approximately $480,000 to be awarded this year and a total of $980,000 through the 2017-18 season. Additional institutions are currently in the evaluation process for this year, with further allocations likely to be awarded and applied to the 2015-16 season and beyond. Among the schools receiving grants:
Arizona State University has won three women’s track & field NCAA Division I National Championship titles and has produced more than 100 Olympians between men’s and women’s swimming and track & field. The ASU Triathlon Club served as the host to hundreds of collegiate triathletes for the USA Triathlon Collegiate Club Nationals in 2013 and 2014.
East Tennessee State University has a long-standing tradition of success in cross country and track & field, having built a successful program at the NCAA Division I level over the last 50 years. ETSU competes in the Southern Conference and triathlon is its ninth women’s sport.
Black Hills State University (S.D.) has had 173 combined All-Americans between men’s and women’s cross country and track & field. Specifically, the women have had 95 All-Americans with 82 coming from track & field and 13 from cross country.
Drury University (Mo.) and their women’s swim team has claimed 10 NCAA Division II National Championship titles, the most in NCAA DII history. Combined, the women’s and men’s swim team has earned 22 NCAA DII national titles and produced seven Olympians.
Queens University of Charlotte (N.C.) begins its journey as a varsity triathlon program in partnership with their NCAA DII National Champion swim team, which recently broke 12 national records and won its first NCAA DII National Championship.
University of West Alabama is a Division II school competing in the Gulf South Conference, and adds triathlon on the heels of establishing official NCAA men’s and women’s outdoor track & field teams in the 2012-13 season.
Concordia University Wisconsin Falcons compete in the Division III Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference and have won nine women’s cross country conference titles, three women’s indoor track & field conference titles and five women’s outdoor track & field conference titles.
North Central College (Ill.) Cardinals have won 15 individual Division III national titles and 189 All-America awards in women’s track & field, and one national title and 27 All-America awards in women’s swimming.
Additionally, applications are now being accepted for the second round of the funding process to award select additional schools with grant funding for the 2016-17, 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons. This second round of grant awards will be a rolling application process reviewed on a case-by-case basis until all funds are distributed.