The team has been developed since 2021, participating in virtual competitions. It has been approved and registered with the American Collegiate Rowing Association (ACRA).
SAU’s new program is the first and only active HBCU women’s rowing team as of now. The only HBCU that sponsored a rowing team before was Howard back in the 1960s. It became prominent for a few years but has been inactive recently.
Currently, SAU’s team has 5 student-athlete members that are allowed to compete in the Quad category. They are looking to add more to be able to compete in categories for 10 members. SAU junior rowing team member Mikahya Hill shared why she joined the team established by Dr. Mark Janas.
“What made me want to join was the fact that this was the first HBCU rowing team and he was dedicating it to women,” she said. “I wanted to be a part of that type of movement and change a predominantly male white sport [with] a little bit of melanin magic, to have black girls doing it.”
The team is set to start competing in live water in the Fall of 2022.