By Jessica Shelburne
Here at Roanoke College, we are fortunate to receive a brand new, state of-the-art athletics facility, better known as the Cregger Center. Among other things, the Cregger Center has provided faculty with new offices, classrooms, and boardrooms, Varsity athletics with new courts, practice space, and locker rooms, and students/staff with an abundance of new exercise equipment. In addition, the new main gym has become a convenient and nice location to hold large gatherings such as admissions events and community assemblies.
A significant advantage resulting from the construction of the Cregger Center is that it has led to an increased number of student athletes at Roanoke, which is a clear reflection of the facility’s positive impact on athletic recruiting. Last year, in the 2016-17 school year, there was a recorded 379 student athletes, whereas the number currently stands at 435 (recorded as of October 1, 2017). There’s a correlation with that statistic that connects the ratio of male to female. This year is the first year in several years where the male enrollment exceeds that of female enrollment. Many say this increase goes hand in hand with the student-athlete influx.
“Not only does the new facility bring more athletes and students, but it is also used to showcase Roanoke College and the commitment we have towards providing students with a good experience,” said Scott Allison, Athletic Director.
Similarly to how volleyball and basketball gain from the new courts, the RC dance and cheer teams have enjoyed the new facilities.
“The Cregger Center has brought in more students to games and has allowed the girls to be able to stay on the sidelines and interact with the crowd more. The new gym absolutely benefits halftime performances,” said Aje Gore, RC’s dance coach.
“The Cregger Center has not only given varsity teams a bigger arena to play in, but also a space for cheer and dance to showcase their hard work, demonstrate the ability to engage with more fans, and perform the skills we have all worked so hard for,” said Gwyneth Lorna, sophomore. Lorna is a member of the cheer team.
Even students that do not participate in organized sports can find fun and use from the new building. Freshman Holly Fisher exercises regularly and loves working out at Cregger. “The construction of the Cregger Center has actually motivated me to go to the gym more because there is a large variety of equipment to use in the gym that allows me to get a full body workout,” said Fisher.
The Cregger Center has not only been beneficial to Roanoke College, but to the community as a whole. It has been the location for multiple large sporting events such as the women’s lacrosse championship, division 3 final eight games, and four straight days of VHSL track meets.
There are a countless number of benefits that come with the construction of the Cregger Center. From being an ideal facility to host athletic, academic, and community events to having a positive impact on recruiting, the new building undoubtedly completes the RC campus.