I severely missed the smell of chlorine and the 5:30 am practices that come with the aquatic lifestyle of a swimmer and water polo player (haha jk about those 5:30s…purely torturous). I tried to play land games such as soccer or volleyball or running before getting involved with the efforts to start a water polo club, but with my whole life spent in the water, I didn’t get the same satisfaction from pavement, fields, and courts. I swam and played polo all four years in high school so its absence in my life was hard at first (shout out to Metea Valley High School!)
Being a part of a club that has only had four official practices, no tournaments or games, and is about 75% boys is much cooler than it actually sounds. We have the ability to make this club what we want it to be and shape its future. Of course, our lack of a history also poses its fair share of challenges, but the payoff during these next few years is going to be sweet : )
I did not take the lead on starting this club, but the President of DePaul’s Water Polo Club did a great job of communicating with advisors, the Student Government Association (SGA), and club members on the status of this venture. With his initiatives and the SGA, we received $3000 in funding for our club. This supplies us with pool time, equipment, and liability something-something (not quite on the technicalities of that one..)
I attended last Monday’s practice and it was great to get back in the pool with my other official DePaul Club Water Polo teammates. Despite being embarrassingly out of shape, we had a successful two hours together and the plans for a potential exhibition game with another Chicago area school is in the works. We currently practice at Northeastern Illinois University because DePaul only has a shallow pool and NIU’s is deep. The commute takes about 35 minutes with a 10 minute walk but it’s so worth it to be able to play again.
Unfortunately, the DePaul Water Polo Club is classified as a men’s club but girls can still attend practices and exhibition tournaments and games. Some of the girls are looking to recruit more girls so we can establish a club of our own. Who knows what will happen in the future? But I know that for right now, our new club is perfection! Be sure to check us out next year!