August 22, 2013

A Message From Julie Soriero, Director of Athletics and Department Head DAPER

At this time of year our thoughts here in DAPER are starting to focus on the school year ahead at MIT; preparations are underway for the return of our fall varsity teams for practice, planning for fall physical education courses, facility maintenance and upgrades, and the list goes on from there. But this is also a time for reflection, and as I look back to last year we again have much to be proud of in DAPER.

Our field hockey and women’s soccer teams both reached the “Sweet 16” of their respective NCAA Tournaments; Wyatt Ubellacker capped off a remarkable career in swimming by being named the national swimmer of the year after winning two individual titles at the national championship meet and leading the team to a third-place finish; the club cycling team won another national championship; the list of accomplishments is truly a long one.

For varsity athletics perhaps the best way to look at our success is “by the numbers”:

To cap it all off MIT was awarded the inaugural NEWMAC President’s Cups for both men’s and women’s athletics, trophies that are given to the top overall men’s and women’s programs in the conference. We also had our best-ever finish in the Division III Learfield Director’s Cup standings, placing 10th in the standings that rank the nation’s best overall athletics programs.

Our other components of DAPER continue to grow and thrive as well as we continue to develop and implement programming to our MIT students that provide learning and personal growth opportunities outside their normal classrooms. The quality and breadth of our physical education and recreation programs is reflected by continued record-level participation rates. In the coming year we are excited to add a full-time position to our staff that will coordinate our club sports and intramural programs so that we can better enrich those programs.

We also continued our success in the classroom. Our 15 Academic All-America honors last year set a school record and MIT again collected more academic all-conference awards than any other school in the NEWMAC. Ethan Peterson from our football team was honored for his excellent work both on and off the field by the National Football Foundation when he was chosen as one of 15 student-athletes from all divisions of college football as an NFF Scholar Athlete.

We certainly had our share of challenges last year, from the events surrounding the bombings at the Boston Marathon to weather related issues. But to the credit of our staff and students, we met the challenges that were placed in our path and overcame them to reach the tremendous success levels that we achieved. Also a part of that success is the other part of our DAPER family; our alumni, family and friends – we could not do it without you.

Thank you to all who have supported us in our endeavors this past year.  If you have not had the opportunity to make a donation, please consider making a gift to DAPER by clicking here.  Our success and programs would not be possible without your assistance and support. 

A list of our $100 and higher donors for 2012-13 can be found here.  

Best wishes for the continuation of a great summer!

With gratitude,

Julie Soriero

Director of Athletics and Department Head DAPER

jsoriero@mit.edu