By Stephanie Compton, Guest Writer
Everyone knows that Pacific Lutheran University Student Life has a mission statement. It is used frequently and illustrates everything PLU Student Life stands for.
But one thing that most people don’t know is that in addition to the Student Life mission statement, PLU athletics has one of its own.
According to the PLU mission statement, “the Pacific Lutheran Athletics Department is dedicated to providing a broad-based, quality program and experience for men and women who strive to achieve academic and athletic excellence within the Northwest Conference as well as regional and national levels.”
This statement encompasses what division III sports is all about, creating an experience.
At the Division III level, PLU is not looking to profit off of the attendance of athletic events. PLU looks to give each and every one of the athletes and students at PLU an experience that they will never forget. This is the last time and place that most PLU athletes will competitively play their sport. Win or lose, it is the experience that matters.
While some athletes might go on to win national championships, like the 2012 women’s softball team, the biggest thing PLU gives to its athletes is four years of the greatest time of their life.
The second biggest thing that PLU gives to its athletes is an education. There are no scholarships for athletes at the Division III level, so every athlete at PLU is here with the main goal of getting the best education available. The support that is given to athletes to ensure that they get that education shows just how important it is. If PLU was just out to make money off of their athletes the support would be minimal.
In many Division I athletic programs, the education of the student athlete is not as important as the monetary gain that they give to the school. Many programs only have student athletes for a few years before they go on to professional careers so their GPA and overall education is unimportant. But here, at PLU, the diploma of the student athletes is the ultimate goal.