The Kaskaskia College Sports Association recently celebrated its tenth anniversary and the group is proud to announce that now for a decade has helped raise money and has generated fan support for collegiate athletics at Kaskaskia College. In total, over $750,000 has now been raised through the organization’s efforts. Scholarships have been given, buses have been purchased, and an indoor athletic building has been built during the existence and partnership with the KCSA. Not only have tangible assets been added, but relationships have been built that will help athletes find success in their chosen career.
The KCSA was formed in 2003 and has continued to help the athletic department raise funds for the last ten years. Since its inception, the KCSA has raised $100,000 to help build the indoor athletic building which is now named the “KCSA Sports and Activities Facility”. This building serves each athletic team, intramural programs and community uses by providing an indoor place to practice.
The KCSA also sponsors a $500 Scholarship to a male and female athlete each year and last year gave the first Abbey Quitmeyer Memorial Scholarship. Funds for this scholarship were donated and each year a $500 scholarship is given to a female athlete who is studying in the allied health field. Quitmeyer was the first student delegate to the KCSA while she was a member of the Blue Angels basketball team. She was tragically killed in a car accident two years ago. Coordinator of the KCSA, Cathy Karrick says, “Abbey was the ideal athlete and giving this scholarship to a female athlete in the allied health field is a true testament to the core values of the KC Sports Association.”
Several years ago, the group donated $75,000 for the athletic buses used for transportation. Pictured is the newest addition to the KC fleet which the KCSA has donated $50,000 toward and will donate another $40,000 toward this project. The buses are also being funded by each KC athletic team as they will also collectively donate $30,000 each year through fundraising efforts. The new 41 seat bus (pictured) and a 15 seat bus arrived on campus recently.
Along with raising money, the KCSA connects the athletes with the community and individuals who support KC athletics. Through different activities, athletes are taught responsibility and leadership. The Kid’s Club is a program that was started to get area youth involved in meeting KC athletes. This is also a way for athletes to give back to the community. Karrick says “We have such wonderful athletes here that we want kids to be able to get to know them. Kids in the community sometimes need a good role model to look up to.”
On top of fundraising, parents and/or family members of student athletes are encouraged to get involved with the KCSA. $35.00 a year is the minimum to join. Karrick said, “I think it is extremely important for families to get involved and become members. I would love to see more athletes encourage their own families to join.”
Karrick has been involved in the KCSA since it started. As a former coach, she felt like it was her duty to be involved in the improvement of KC’s athletic success. Karrick often credits the KCSA board for all of the success the KCSA has seen over the years. The current executive board is Wes Monken (Centralia), Chairman; Duane Karrick (Centralia), Vice-Chairman, and Treasurer; Lisa Clatterbuck (Breese), Secretary.
“I have been blessed to work with a great board, coaches, athletes and KC administrators over the last ten years. Some of our board members have been on the board since the day we started. I also love working with the athletes. I am an avid sports fan and I enjoy getting to know the athletes. Special friendships have formed with them and I also enjoy the connection I have with them five years down the road after they graduate. I get excited every year when we get a new project that we are going to do for the athletes. The friendships I form with the coaches and athletes makes me extremely happy. I believe the KCSA has done some great things in the past and I am excited for what lies ahead,” explained Karrick.
“The KCSA is a wonderful organization that is serving the College well,” stated KC President Dr. Jim Underwood. He went on to recognize Cathy Karrick for her leadership along with the KCSA Board for their support of Kaskaskia College.
For more information, contact Karrick at 545-3182.