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Community steps up to support W&M Athletics

All teams to continue to compete without potential end date; increased fundraising remains critical to long-term sustained success

Entering the second year of the pandemic, universities operating broad-based athletics programs continue to battle the additional financial pressures that come with it. William & Mary, as an NCAA Division I institution and one that fields 23 sports, is not immune.

In the fall of 2020, the William & Mary community strongly reiterated its support for the W&M Athletics program. Since then, the university has embarked on a rigorous review of W&M Athletics’ finances as it develops plans for a department that is equitable, has a plan for sustainable finances and continues its practice of community building with alumni, students, fans and friends. The community has also responded, swiftly exceeding short-term fundraising goals. 

Earlier today, William & Mary President Katherine A. Rowe announced that the university’s financial review will not affect any teams’ ability to compete:

“We recognize that every sports program annually depends upon generous support from alumni and friends in order to thrive. Moreover, W&M Athletics as a whole depends upon that generosity in order to avoid a moment in which sport sponsorship must be reevaluated to ensure the department’s financial sustainability while advancing equity.  

In November, the university conveyed the expectation that men’s gymnastics, men’s swimming and men’s track & field would continue at least through 2021-22. We are pleased to announce that these programs will continue to compete, without a stated potential end date, as do all other athletics programs at William & Mary. To be successful, every sport at William & Mary will require sustained higher levels of philanthropic support going forward. “

Interim Athletics Director Jeremy Martin shared the news in his regular communication to the W&M Athletics community.

Martin thanked the community for their commitment to sustained success for W&M Athletics and reiterated the need to maintain that momentum in the coming years.

“This fall, the William & Mary community reiterated the desire for a broad athletics program,” Martin said. “Thus far in FY2020, we’ve seen the financial commitment reflect that desire. However, the magnitude of the financial challenge is not diminished by success in a single year – it must be repeated and increased each and every year.”

More information on the athletics financial review process, as well as plans for achieving and maintaining gender equity, is available on the W&M Athletics website.