Saturday, April 28, 2012

Columbia International University Heading Up Soccer Program

Columbia International University Heading Up Soccer Program
By: Kirsten Richardson

Kim Abbott, CIU Athletic Director
Photo by Kirsten Richardson
COLUMBIA, SC- Columbia International University has been preparing for several years to enter the world of collegiate athletics with a men’s soccer team in fall 2012.  The university’s men’s intramural soccer team has an excellent reputation among the city league, and now they must prepare to move up to the NCCAA.

During my interview with Kim Abbott, Columbia InternationalUniversity’s Athletic Director, we discussed the preparation that has gone into planning the new Athletics program.  Hours have been spent informing the community about CIU and its plans to use athletics to spread the Gospel message, sharing the vision with potential donors, and hiring the coaches and staff who share CIU’s heart for Christ and who will help grow the programs.
New soccer field under construction
Photo by Kirsten Richardson

 The point that has been stressed the most throughout the entire process of developing an athletics program was that the students who sign up to play sports for the school will be evaluated through the same application process as all other applicants.  Not only will their athletic talent be observed, but, more importantly, their character and faith in Jesus Christ will be examined thoroughly.  The athletes that wear the Columbia International University Rams uniforms will be representing more than the university, they will be representing Christ.

Recreational field to be renovated
Photo by Kirsten Richardson
The Columbia International University campus began undergoing construction three summers ago.  During the spring 2012 semester the student body was informed the necessary finances to finish the soccer fields had not been received, resulting in the construction being postponed.  Consequently, the administration and athletic department decided to upgrade the recreational field that had been used by the women’s and men’s intramural soccer teams for practice, ultimate frisbee teams, and various student activities. Returning CIU students can now expect to return to a newly landscaped and irrigated field and brand new soccer field since the necessary finances have been received.

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