Kent State Tuscarawas to expand athletic and music programs

Alyssa Ronyak

Kent State Tuscarawas Campus is planning to expand its athletics and music programs starting as early as this fall. The goal for the regional campus is to expand the overall collegiate experience for its students.

At this time, the campus currently offers men and women’s basketball and men’s golf. Tuscarawas Campus plans to expand on these offerings by including women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s soccer, cross country, baseball, softball and wrestling.  

“The ability to offer expanded athletic programs at our campus will give students another option when deciding to continue their athletic careers at the college level,” said Rob Brindley, coordinator of Academic Services as well as coach of the men’s golf team at the Tuscarawas Campus.

He added that expanding opportunities will get students more involved, which will in turn give them a more positive experience at the Tuscarawas Campus.

By adding more athletics, the intent is that the Tuscarawas Campus will receive a broader appeal and draw the community to the campus for additional social activities. Plans to expand the athletic programs carry anticipation that it will bring a steadier enrollment rate.

“Athletics is the largest classroom in any educational setting, as it offers learning situations for all those involved, from fans, to teammates” Brindley said. “Team building and being able to fight through adversity and how you handle yourself in those moments, as well as the successful times, will go a long way in determining one’s character and how a person will respond in dealing with personal, social and work setbacks.”

Much goes into an expansion of this magnitude.

“It’s not only researching the idea of expansion, but also considering and building budget scenarios to get a clearer picture of what a program should look like and how much it will cost,” Brindley said.

Bradley Bielski, dean and chief administrative officer at the Tuscarawas Campus, is both committed and excited about the campus’s future plans.

“The time is right to expand athletics, since we can see how it will impact our students, campus and community,” he said. “We have the full support of local media, coaches and athletic directors.”

The expansion is in full motion and the search for coaches is currently in the interview process.

“We have had several interviews with potential coaches already and are excited to see the interest,” Brindley said.

Along with the athletics expansion, the Tuscarawas Campus is also bringing back its band and choir programs, which were once offered in the early years of the campus. Both the band and choir were defunded due to lack of interest. 

The music programs will now be offered as a credit course in the fall. The Tuscarawas Campus community is taking the initiative to spread the word to prospective students in order to get them involved. To promote the success of each program, there are plans to hold end-of-semester performances.

“The music programs are on our fall semester schedule as credit courses.” said Pam Patacca, a public relations coordinator at the Tuscarawas Campus. “Registration will indicate further interest in the courses, as the students will determine the future of the program.”

Alyssa Ronyak is a regionals reporter for The Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].