By Connor MacLachlan
The Grand Rapids Community College Athletic Department will begin to charge non-students and staff admission at Ford Fieldhouse for the home basketball and volleyball games.
The $3 admission charge will go toward fundraising for additional athletic scholarships while students, staff and faculty will be allowed free entry with their RaiderCard.
GRCC Athletic Director Billy Firn estimates that around 85 percent of student athletes are currently on scholarship. Though this is a high number, Firn is optimistic that the small amount of funding from the ticket prices will be an impactful beginning to increasing the amount of student athletes on scholarship.
“This is a start,” Firn told The Collegiate. “If this can help even one student-athlete in the future, it’d be a success.”
The new admission charge at home games will be something for loyal fans and family members to get accustomed to, but the Athletics Department will also offer regular-season passes for all of the home games. Each pass will be able to admit up to six people to a game. The regular-season passes for the volleyball games cost $40, and will be effective for eight home games. For basketball, the regular-season passes cost $75 and can be used for 14 men’s and women’s home games.
In addition to offering some insight on the additional scholarships, Firn expressed some excitement for the step forward for the Athletic Department.
“We have a good product, we have a legitimate program,” he said. “This is a step towards showing that we have a legitimate program.”
The GRCC Women’s Volleyball team kicks off their season tonight at 6:30 p.m. at Ford Fieldhouse where they will face off against the Lansing Community College Stars.