As we continue to return to life as we knew it before the pandemic began, fans, coaches and athletes alike have been able to get back out on the court and field in 2021. It’s certainly been a welcome sight for all involved, but some groups are looking to increase the number of opportunities to play certain sports now that the competition has returned.
The First Point Volleyball Foundation has been inexistence for several years before the pandemic even started(since 2016), but are looking to increase their impact now that sports are getting back to normal. The foundation’s mission is to increase the number of avenues for which boys and men can play volleyball.
“In order to seize the moment during this amazing time in the sport of volleyball, we seek your guidance, your contacts and your active support,” said FPVF chairman John Speraw. Via First Point Volleyball.com
The foundation has played a part in bringing men’s volleyball programs to several colleges across the country. Over the summer, they helped Nassau Community College in New York start up a men’s volleyball program to began during the current school year.
“We thank the NJCAA and the First Point Volleyball Foundation for providing the College with the opportunity to bring this athletic offering to our students,” said Dr. Jermaine F. Williams, Nassau Community College President. “We look forward to cheering on the Lions Men’s Volleyball team in the 2021-2022 season.” Via Patch.com
Nassau Community College was one of 15 schools in the NJCAA to receive grants to allocate towards starting a men’s volleyball program. It was a banner accomplishment for First Point to be a part of such a pervasive project that will allow more men to play volleyball. The foundation is optimistic that this will be a motivating example for other institutions to follow suit.
“Our hope at First Point is to see 35 or 40 more two-year colleges follow these 15 and sponsor men’s volleyball,” said Mick Haley, FPVF volunteer board member. Via Patch.com
In addition to creating enhanced access for men to play volleyball, First Point also likes to come at their objective by highlighting the likely financial gain it can have for a college or university.
“You make money in our sport because the maximum allowed is 4.5 scholarships. The average (men’s volleyball) roster size is 16 to 18 and some rosters are 20-plus,” said Wade Gerard, First Point’s CEO. He was alluding to the notion that the NCAA has a scholarship threshold for Division I volleyball at 4.5. Via Forbes.com
It certainly seems like First Point is off to a great start in its first five years of existence, and that journey is only just beginning. Gerard and Speraw are hoping to have a minimum of 40 Division I schools offer men’s volleyball in the next five years, and are looking at their program as an opportunity to develop future Olympians.