Written by Mark Keller, director of college advancement
Featured in"On Campus" in the Medicine Hat News
The night before I wrote this column I watched Belgium score a late goal to defeat Korea Republic in the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
I have no particular affinity to either Korea or Belgium.
I’m not a particular fan of soccer.
It was only recently that I discovered that my cable package does not include TSN.
In short, I prefer doing sports to watching sports.
But nonetheless I found myself paying rapt attention to the action and quite enjoyed the desperate and intense effort Korea made in the last few minutes of the game. Competitive sports have a unique capacity to draw us in, drive excitement, and unite us in a cause.
Those are among the reasons the Medicine Hat College Rattlers are an enduring tradition on campus. Every year about 110 student athletes compete in golf, soccer, volleyball, basketball and futsal. Like other students they carry a heavy class schedule but still find time and energy to train, practice and compete across the province.
The Rattlers are also active in the community, visiting schools and adding energy to good causes when they have the time. Student athletes learn in the classroom and experience a living laboratory that develops leadership and team skills that serve them well in life. They work hard on and off the field.
And those exciting FIFA World Cup games you can watch today serve as a great segue to the national soccer championships the college and the Rattlers will host this fall.
On November 3 to 8, the top women’s soccer teams from across Canada will gather in Medicine Hat to compete in the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association soccer championships. The season won’t begin until September so we don’t know which teams will be involved.
Except for one.
We know our team will be there, and we’re planning to offer them the best home field advantage we can. This is probably just the third or fourth time Medicine Hat has earned the privilege of hosting national championships. The tournament offers us an opportunity to put the Rattlers and the City on the national scene. I think it is going to be fun.
Terry Ballard, the head of our Sports & Wellness department, is working to bring the college and community together to support the championships. If you’ve got energy or ideas, I’m sure he’d like to hear from you.
Visit www.mhc.ab.ca to learn more about your college, contact Mark Keller with your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @mark_mhc.
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