2018 Women's Commission Awards

UNH Swimming and Diving Team members

Happy  46th Birthday Title IX,

All of us agree that Title IX legislation has brought slow - but steady – progress. While, in general, opportunities for women in athletics at UNH have risen, Cathy Coakley, Educational Program Coordinator in Athletics, said as a keynote at the March 28 Women’s Commission Celebration, “With these improvements comes the hiring of more men coaching women’s sports.” As a result, women don’t “see themselves” as coaches because, the reality is we’re not getting equal chances at coaching careers. Stephanie Jones, Associate Head Coach at UNH who had played ice hockey throughout her childhood and college career, said, “It simply didn’t occur to me that I could be coach since, until my senior year, I’d never seen a woman coaching.  Once I saw a female hockey coach, I took every assistant volunteer position I could find to build for my career in the field.”

Coakley said, “Qualified women need to be given priority in the hiring process. Salaries for women head and assistant coaches need to be more equitable to their male counterparts in comparable sports, ones that are played comparably and rated equally nationally.” From the 70’s through the early 80’s, 90% of college women’s basketball coaches (and 90% of the head coaches) were women. Today, of 349 Division I WBB programs, only 40 % of the head coaches are women.

“We understand why men want to be coaches for the women’s teams,” said Athletics Coach for women’s field hockey Robin Balducci. “The women play as a team more strongly than the men do, women don’t compete to be ‘star’, they don’t get into personal conflicts on campus, and they don’t have to be coaxed scholastically. We understand why men may choose to coach women’s teams, and they’re great at it. We just need higher numbers of women in these positions.”

Associate Coach Jones concluded the program by saying that her nephew prefers her coaching lessons to anyone else’s. “I want to learn from Auntie Stephanie. She’s the expert.”

Cheers to 2018 UNH winners on the national stage: Elinor Purrier, Track and Field, and the UNH Women’s Swimming and Diving Team.

2018 Women’s Commission Awardees:

Amanda Daly, Graduate Student

Margaret Quick, Undergraduate Student

The UNH Swimming and Diving Team, The Joyce Gibbs Award

Congratulations and thank you to all from The President’s Commission on the Status of Women for those who work to bring the full participation of women in academic and campus life.