Stanford University students marched outside the school on Monday to protest planned funding cuts that will see the end of 11 varsity sports programs. According to KPIX 5, the changes, announced last July, will affect women’s and coed sailing along with lightweight rowing, men’s rowing, field hockey, squash, synchronized swimming, men’s and women’s fencing, men’s volleyball, and wrestling.
The university had explained its decision in a letter to its community that said that the athletic department was facing a “serious and growing financial challenge” exacerbated by the pandemic. Figures cited indicated the university was facing a shortfall of $12 million.
However, the protesting students do not believe the university needs to take the drastic action. Kyler Presho, who is part of the men’s volleyball team, told KPIX 5, “With a $29 billion endowment, there is no figure too large to save these 11 communities – these 11 sports – that have been cut.”
Students will now have to wait a few more weeks for the university to announce its final decision.