Student athletes deserve additional financial support

Shanice Davis

One of the biggest questions in the NCAA is whether or not students athletes should receive a monthly stipend for participating in college athletics. The argument has gone back several years as student athletes are unable to get a part-time job due to time constraints with team schedules.

Before I took a public speaking course, I was against the NCAA paying student athletes for their contributed talents to university teams. I once believed that student athletes received more than enough money from scholarships and sponsorships providing clothing and tennis shoes.

One basketball player changed my perception of that when she gave a speech on the controversial topic. She discussed how difficult it was to take care of expenses when all of her free-time was dedicated to workouts and practice. She also mentioned that taking care of bills such as her cell phone and gas for her car required her to ask her parents for money.

Once she concluded her speech, it dawned on me that this is a real subject that directly affects the majority of student athletes. Many athletes struggle to pay for expenses and bills when restrictions prevent them from obtaining a job on or off campus.

Another issue that student athletes have is that the local community, university and NCAA grow economically when their talents are used. When teams are successful, fans go out and purchase T-shirts, memorabilia and other items to show their support. In turn, that helps boost the local and industry’s economy.

So what would be the issue with providing a monthly stipend to student athletes?

Some are concerned with the increase of student fees and tuition if universities provide additional financial support to all student athletes. Those against the additional funds believe that students receive enough financial support with the coverage of books, tuition, and room and board.

I am convinced that the provided scholarships are not enough for athletes to survive on. Sure, there is financial aid, grants and additional scholarships that athletes can apply for, but part of being a student athlete is the security that upon graduation an athlete can walk away with minimal to no debt.

As fans and students, we expect our athletes to perform at the highest level and bring home wins and championship trophies. Why can we not provide assistance to them for everything that they do? I’m not telling anyone to empty their pockets the next time that you run into an athlete. Just remember to appreciate what student athletes do for this university.

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