Divya Biswal '15, from Ottawa, Ontario, competes in a track and field event.

Pride of Place: Laurentian Track and Field

Lauren Weeks ’18

St. Lawrence University Head Women’s Track and Field Coach Kate Curran M’11 has attended every NCAA Division III championship in cross country as well as indoor and outdoor track and field since she began coaching at St. Lawrence 10 years ago. Without fail, she says, she has been asked by coaches, student-athletes, officials, and administrators, “When is St. Lawrence going to host the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Division III Championships again?” 

“This is the true testament of the tremendous experience that St. Lawrence provides visitors to our campus,” says Curran, who is eager to host again.

In 2003, and again in 2015, St. Lawrence University earned bids to host the championships, providing student-athletes, coaches, visitors, and alumni unforgettable experiences in this remote corner of the country.

“Hosting the NCAA track and field championships are a tremendous honor,” says Curran. “Hosting events of this magnitude were opportunities to show off our outstanding facilities, which included our athletic venues as well as our campus and community.” To date, St. Lawrence is the only school (of any division) in the state of New York to host the championships.

“I overheard a conversation between two athletes who were saying, ‘Wow, look at this place; I wish I knew this place existed when I was looking at colleges,’” says Head Men’s Track and Field Coach John Newman ’94, who believes that hosting a championship event puts the University’s name in front of a lot of people from around the world who might be unfamiliar with St. Lawrence. “That really galvanized how important it is to get people on our campus to experience St. Lawrence in person.”

Due to the greatest number of participants, the outdoor track and field championship is the largest championship the NCAA sponsors at a single site. The influx of visitors to the area creates a greater need for logistical planning and coordination for the event. 

“We received tremendous support from so many areas of campus, including the President’s Office, facilities and grounds, dining and conference services, residence life, IT, safety and security, and of course almost every member of the athletic department,” Newman says, also expressing his gratitude toward the Canton community and local colleges and high schools in the area. “The North Country rallied to be as receptive and hospitable as possible and made lots of accommodations to handle the large number of visitors.”

Both coaches are proud that the campus offers their teams the advantages of its facilities, grounds and regional terrain every season.

“Being selected to host the championships in 2015 speaks volumes to the experience that student-athletes, coaches, officials, and spectators enjoyed in 2003,” says Curran. 

“This event really put St. Lawrence and our program on the map as a top-level hosting site,” adds Newman.

For a full schedule of Saints athletics visit www.saintsathletics.com