Dunk Department: Raising School Spirit One Game at a Time

Dunk Department: Raising School Spirit One Game at a Time

Sylvia Wang and Evelyn Safar

The Dunk Department has been an active force in Sewickley Academy’s Senior School athletic programs for over 7 years. With the constant effort of its members, the Dunk Department encourages students to participate in all types of sports, both as athletes and spectators.

Nick Wilson and Elsa Gordon, both current juniors, are the co-presidents and leaders of the Dunk Department. They communicate with team captains and coaches about match, meet, and game times, and monitor the MySewickley master sports calendar; they share this information through email and morning announcements to give students ways to get engaged with their athletics teams. They aim to bring even more school spirit to the Sewickley Academy community; this winter they covered the boys and girls basketball teams, both swimming teams, hockey, and squash.

They planned to cover this year’s spring sports, but unfortunately, all baseball, softball, boys tennis, and both boys and girls lacrosse events were canceled. They hope next year they will be able to.

Ms. Rankin is the staff supervisor for the Dunk Department. She helps decide themes for games and matches (like blackout, whiteout, school colors, Hawaiian, etc.) and reminds Dunk Department members to make announcements and send out emails.

Both Wilson and Gordon play multiple sports for Sewickley Academy — Wilson plays soccer, baseball, and basketball, and Gordon plays soccer and lacrosse. This means they both know just how great it is to be supported by a cheering student section throughout a game, and they want every SA athlete to experience that same feeling.

Regarding the role of the Dunk Department, they said “I’d say we are the messengers and awareness-raisers of the school… We try to create some positive noise around events so our athletes can have a fun and exciting setting to compete in.”

In the last few years, the Dunk Department has made tremendous progress in incorporating different types of sports into their coverage. A program that began just to support basketball has grown in the last half-decade to include all senior school sports, from swimming to squash and everything in between. Their continued commitment to raising faculty and student spirit has already had an enormous impact, and they intend to keep spirit growing for years to come.