CIS study spells $

By Sean Nyilassy

Canadian Interuniversity Sport, the governing body for university sport in Canada, released the results of a survey of athletic awards provided to student athletes across Canada on Feb. 9. Since new athletics awards rules were implemented in June 2000, the member schools of CIS have agreed to report all athletic awards granted each year. Survey says… almost $5 million in the 2003-2004 season alone.

That’s right, based on data collected from 49 of the 50 universities that are members of CIS, the amount of athletic awards provided to student athletes totalled $4,856,712, with approximately one in four athletes receiving an award.

Reasons for the athletic awards include: recognizing athletic excellence, to provide financial support to student athletes who are unable to afford tuition but are too busy to hold a part-time job and as an incentive when recruiting athletes. CIS began collecting the data as a way to monitor schools and ensure that the athletic awards were adhering to policy.

Males received more of the awards, taking 63 per cent despite making up only 54 per cent of the student athlete body. In men’s sports, hockey and basketball received the most funding, with athletic awards working out to $1,160 and $946 average per athlete respectively. On the ladies’ side, basketball and volleyball snagged the top spots with averages per athlete of $923 and $765 respectively.

This may all sound like a lot of money, but who’s to say they don’t deserve it? Of the 10,092 student-athletes who competed in 2003-2004, 19 per cent were named Academic All-Canadians last year, achieving a minimum grade point average of 80 per cent despite their heavy training schedules.

So where does the University of Calgary stand? Surely if we, the students, are being asked to shell out more money or risk losing 14 Dinos teams then the athletics budget must be stretched thin as it is.

On the contrary, U of C student athletes received the sixth highest amount of publicly funded, athletic-related university administered awards of the 49 universities reporting. According to the data collected by CIS, $225,018 was provided in athletic awards to our 268 student athletes.

This places us in 12th for average amount spent per athlete, but is still a hell of a lot of money. The men that make up 62 per cent of Dinos athletes got more than their share of the pie, taking 80 per cent of the athletic awards.

While students in the Dinos athletic program are receiving a large sum of money yearly, so are other students in western Canada.

Five Canada West division schools place in the top 10 for average amount of athletic award money per athlete. Simon Fraser University and the University of Winnipeg were second and third on the list.

As for total awards granted, six CW schools made the top ten with the University of Regina and University of Alberta paving the way. The U of R reported an astounding $405,992 in awards.

To find out more about the data collected by CIS visit for full results.

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