Celebrating Title IX
Dec 05, 2012
Concordia Athletics recently paid tribute to the 40th anniversary of Title IX with a program, alumni panel and parade of uniforms.
Title IX is the groundbreaking federal legislation that opened the way for competitive women’s athletics in high schools and colleges.
Women’s basketball coach Jessica Rahman ’88 says Title IX gave her a passion for gender equity.
“Everyone benefits from participation in sports, so it should be equal for men and women,” Rahman says.
Today, she says, one of three girls in school participates in a sport, learning valuable lessons of perseverance, teamwork, dedication and the attainment of goals.
“Title IX is about equality for all,” Rahman says.
Collette Folstad, who coached the first Cobber women’s intercollegiate basketball teams and is in the college’s Hall of Fame, recalls the early struggles women endured in athletics.
“Sports was considered undignified and an unwholesome atmosphere for women,” Folstad says. “We literally had nothing in the early days. No equipment, poor gymnasiums and men’s uniforms. But we had a lot fun. We were so full of desire to play sports.”
Coral (Beske) Lunde ’80, a Concordia Hall of Famer in basketball and field hockey, recalls the start of women’s teams as a result of Title IX.
“Sports was everything for me, and I never thought about college until Concordia gave me a chance and a home because of sports,” she says. “Title IX opened a lot of doors for women.”
The original focus of Title IX was fairness for women in the employment practices of federally financed institutions. Enacted in 1972, the federal legislation required all entities receiving federal funds to end discrimination on the basis of sex and, since then, Title IX is best known for mandating equal opportunities for men and women in high school and collegiate athletic programs.