16 October 2018
This semester marks the second year of competition for the Figure Skating Club at UCCS, and the club has already set its goal to become one of the most competitive clubs in the region.
Following a successful first year which had two members finish in the top five of the U.S. Collegiate Figure Skating Championships in August, the club is hoping to send its competitive team to next year’s national competition in Delaware.
Teams qualify for nationals through three events taking place in the fall and spring. The first of those competitions is the Tiger Challenge, taking place on Nov. 3 and 4 at Colorado College.
“The top five teams from each region go on to qualify for the nationals each year,” said club President Gwendolynn De Graaf. “Last year, we finished No. 5 and just missed out on making it, but I was still very proud of how we performed in our first year as a club.”
The team hopes to start strong at their first step toward qualifying: the Tiger Challenge. Each of the three competitions feature two sections, with individuals competing by themselves for the opening competition with team competitions between other clubs at the end.
While the club is working to meet its competitive goals, De Graaf said that anybody who is interested in figure skating should look into participating with the club. Potential members of all skill levels are welcome to join or check out the club.
“Right now we have 11 of our members on the competitive team, but we are always open to recreational members. The amount of recreational club members we have had varies by semester,” said De Graaf. “You don’t need prior experience to join as a recreational member, and we are always excited for new people to join the club. We are welcome to anybody who wants to come have fun.”
The club currently hosts weekly meetings, which usually take place every Friday from 10:15 p.m. to 11:15 p.m., though certain weeks, the day or time of meeting may change. The fee to join for the fall semester is $40 for students who are not looking to be on the competitive team.
“I’m very excited to see what the team is able to do in the upcoming events,” said De Graaf. “Obviously, the goal is for nationals, and that will start with the competition in November.”
With the first event taking place here in Colorado Springs, De Graaf also mentioned the help that support could bring to the team.
“The Tiger Challenge will be here in Colorado Springs on the Colorado College campus,” said De Graaf. “I would love to see some UCCS students come to support us.”