Varsity athletes receive scholarship eligibility but more support sought

By Jessica Reyes

Humber Hawks coaches of every varsity sport are recruiting year-round, equipped with scholarship dollars to bring athletes to the college.

Ray Chateau, Athletic Director of Humber College says there are many scholarship opportunities for athletic students.

“We don’t have a set budget amount, it’s approximately $110,000 per year,” Chateau said.

Athletics Manager Jim Bialek was unable to provide the number of student athletes eligible for scholarships, but said the teams that achieve national championships get a bigger piece of scholarship pie.

“Last year, soccer had the highest amount of scholarship dollars. They won the national championship, but this year they have about half,” he said.

Humber athletes receive their scholarship at the end of each school term instead of at the front end like other colleges and universities. They are reimbursed for achieving academic requirements while playing their sport. If students don’t pass, they will not receive the scholarship at the end of the term, said Bialek.

Humber athletes are provided with scholarships, transportation to away games and uniforms. Athletes are responsible for providing their personal shoes for games and practices.

“Meal money is provided, not a lot, but helps subsidize for buying something on the road. The coaches and therapist are well aware of nutrition,” Bialek said.

In college sports, especially the NCAA in the United States, there is a large debate surrounding whether or not student athletes should be paid or receive a portion of the profits made from their talent.

R.J. Ramirez, point guard for the Humber men’s varsity basketball team, said paying college athletes would be very beneficial.
“We wouldn’t have to work, we could put more time into the sport. It would make us work like a professional,” Ramirez said.

He said college athletes would have extra money in their pocket that would motivate everyone to perform better.

Bialek disagreed, but Chateau said student athletes aren’t able to work when they dedicate time to games and practices. “For many of them it’s difficult to have a part-time job when they’ve got athletic commitments that they do for the institution,” Chateau said.

Chateau and Bialek say there’s not enough budget to pay athletes and unlike the U.S., Humber does not charge admission to watch home games.

“For us to charge students to watch students is just wrong. I don’t think there should be an entrance fee in my opinion for any Canadian collegiate or university game,” Bialek said.