What Title IX means to them…

If you were paying any attention to sports last week, you know last Wednesday was the 38th anniversary of Title IX. So during the week I decided to talk with some female athletes and other women in sports that I’ve come in contact with to hear about what Title IX means to them. Here’s what they had to say:

“I am a product of Title IX. The opportunities that I have to be a professional basketball player, and to participate in something I love are a direct result of Title IX. It has allowed women to rally with one another and stand up on our own feet in every aspect — athletically, politically, socially, etc. I thank God for the women who were willing to stand up for their future and allow woman like me more chances to be successful.”Tamika Catchings, Indiana Fever

“To me, Title IX is all about opportunity. It means that we don’t have to be slaves to the majority, or to the sports that bring in the most money. It means that everybody gets a chance to play.” – Samantha Steele, Fox College Sports

“Title IX has played a very important role in my life as a professional athlete. If Title IX did not exist, I might not have been able to play the sport that I love at such a competitive level through high school, college and now for the San Antonio Silver Stars. Before Title IX, women did not have nearly as many opportunities as men did to play sports. But, because of it, I have this opportunity, my daughter has the opportunity and all future generations of female athletes will have the opportunity to compete at the highest level.” –Helen Darling, San Antonio Silver Stars

“Title IX has created opportunities for not only myself but many other young women to go to school, play sports and excel at a high level.” –Kelli Tennant, Fox Sports, USC Volleyball

“For me Title IX isn’t just about equality, girls getting the same opportunities as boys; it’s also about the mental, emotional, and physical health benefits.  In high school and growing up girls can get the chance to compete in athletics, learn valuable life lessons, and obtain scholarships.  That was crucial for me as a young woman.  Athletics can keep girls off of the streets, make positive choices, and away from drugs, alcohol, violence, and other types of risky behavior.  They also teach camaraderie, sportsmanship, and perseverance.  Some young women need those athletic scholarships to continue their education, or need to learn how to value themselves and through sports they can do just that.  Title IX impacts girls in more ways than letting them play the same games boys do.  However as an adult and a professional female athlete, Title IX makes the bold statement that women can have an equal opportunity to do what men do.  In such a male dominated sport like football, I’m aware that I will always have struggles and will always have to fight, but Title IX set the foundation to let me play the game that I love today.” -Sarah Beauchamp, Palm Beach Punishers, IWFL

“Title IX is our history.  It represents every female athlete who loves the game, wants to play it, and not be held back from showing the world what they can do. It is why we play, how we play and who we are playing for.” – Jessica Mendoza

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