By Amy Jackson
Alexandria, VA – At their November membership meeting, the Alexandria Sportsman’s Club (ASC) hosted keynote speaker Maureen Nassar, Associate Athletic Director in the Office of Athletic Communications at George Mason University (GMU), for the program “Title IX Turns 50.”
With over 12 years with the Washington Wizards and almost 19 years with GMU, AAD Nassar expounded upon the limitations imposed upon female athletes of past generations, and the culmination of what Title IX legislation has brought to the arena for the future of female student-athletes, since its adoption in 1972.
Title IX, as clarified in the program, “is an important federal civil rights act that guarantees that our daughters and sons are treated in a like manner with regard to all educational programs and activities, including sports.”
Title IX continues: “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”
Earlier this year, the ASC it celebrated 75 years and their 65th Annual High School Awards Banquet. The invitation recognized the accomplishments of many student-athletes in our city who work hard, play hard, compete with grace, and represent our city with dignity and pride.
It wasn’t that long ago that I, too, was a student-athlete. Growing up, I participated in the Alexandria [Parks & Recreation] summer softball league, and then-T.C. Williams High School girls’ tennis and softball.
I had also grown up with avid golfers as parents, but when I asked the coaches if I could play on the (boys) golf team, it was an emphatic ‘no’. Yet, years later, we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Title IX.
I am thankful for Title IX, the opportunities it afforded me and my peers to play and coach the sports we love at the same level of our male counterparts. Sports give us life experience that cannot be taught but for on the court, course, or field. Sportsmanship. Teamwork. Leadership. I am proud to know that our city, our schools, and our community is a village that supports student-athletes and their goals and dreams.
In 2022, the ASC “raised $50,000 to provide twenty (20) $2,500 scholarships to deserving student athletes attending Alexandria’s four high schools. This was the largest amount given in one year by ASC. Thirteen (13) of the twenty (20) scholarships were awarded to young women for their outstanding academic and athletic achievements.”
This encouragement, fostering, and acceptance continues to create awareness that female student-athletes are not expendable. Individually or in solidarity, they are formidable
Vice Mayor Amy Jackson, a career educator, is currently serving her second term on the Alexandria City Council. Raised in Alexandria, she is the first ACHS (TCW) “Lady Titan” to hold a seat as an Alexandria City Councilwoman and now as Vice Mayor. She currently lives in the West End with her husband and two children who attend Alexandria City Public Schools.