The University of Regina continues to grapple with criticism following its decision to end both wrestling programs and the men’s volleyball team.
On Monday, the U of R made the announcement that the athletic programs would not be returning for the coming year.
Since the announcement, athletes and local high school coaches have voiced their frustration with the institution.
Harold Reimer, dean of the faculty of kinesiology and health studies, spoke on 980 CJME’s Gormley Friday and said the decision wasn’t made lightly.
“We took our time with this decision and wanted to make sure we were making a good decision.”
He said they looked at a number of criteria which included budget, community support and investment — both moral and financial support — and then the school’s ability to recruit.
All sports at the University are required to raise their own funds for non-academic scholarships and non-conference tournaments.
“Our athletics program is running a deficit and I can’t, in any good conscience, use money that’s designated for academic programming, to divert that to provide funding for athletic programming, that’s not fair.”
He said the funding for the athletic program comes from a fee that every student is charged while they are enrolled, which is common across many campuses.
When it first made the announcement, the University said it is in response to a review that was done that indicated the school had too many teams when compared to similarly sized institutions.
“That’s not an easy decision to make and it affects people and affects their lives and I know it will have an impact on the men’s volleyball community and the men and women’s wrestling community.”
But he still anticipates the sports to thrive because there are still opportunities in the province.
“There’s still a wrestling program at the (University of Saskatchewan) and there’s still a men’s volleyball program at the U of S as well.”
Reimer indicated the school is setting up a meeting with their students to fully explain their rationale behind the decision.
“We started that process and that’s important for us to do.”
A meeting was held on Tuesday but many athletes had left frustrated.