SUNY Geneseo Alums Create GoFundMe For NCAA Travel In Light of NY-NC Travel Ban

Earlier this week SUNY Geneseo alumni created a GoFundMe to help support the SUNY Geneso Blue Wave’s travel to the 2019 NCAA Division III Championships, to be held in Greensboro, North Carolina March 20-23.

SUNY Geneseo is a public school, subject to New York law. In March 2016 New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed Executive Order 155, which “bar[s] any such publicly funded or publicly sponsored travel to such location [North Carolina], unless such travel is necessary for the enforcement of New York State law, to meet prior contractual obligations, or for the protection of public health, welfare, and safety.”

This law was signed after the state of North Carolina passed HB2 (the so-called “bathroom bill”). At the time it caused the ACC and the NCAA to remove Championships from North Carolina and other states to institute travel bans of their own.

To comply with the NY Executive Order and using state funds, SUNY Geneseo would need to fly into and out of Virginia and stay an hour north in Virginia for the Championships.

As described by the fundraiser, this “is not conducive to these student athletes performing to their peak ability, for which they have worked so hard for the entire season.”

According to local news outlet 13WHAM on Thursday State Senator Patrick Gallivan held a press conference asking Cuomo to rescind the order. Cuomo’s senior advisor issued the following statement in response,

“In New York, we do not support blatant discrimination, bigotry and bias. Standing up for equality is not a fad and as long as this anti-LGBTQ law remains in effect, New York tax dollars are not going to be spent there.”

Later both Geneseo and Brockport issued statements acknowledging the logistical challenges, but maintaining their support for the Governor’s order.

The Geneseo Blue Wave qualified 10 athletes for NCAAs.

Senior Nancy Nasky qualified in the 500 freestyle. Sophomore Lauren Siegel qualified in the 200 IM. Classmate Deidra Osula qualified in the 50 freestyle and will join sophomores Madeline KnightKelly Lennon, and Noelle Staso on the 200 freestyle relay.

The team also qualified four divers: first year Corey Wirth, sophomore Alyssa Vadala, and juniors Samantha Reichman and Kiersten Coates.

Two other SUNY athletes are qualified and face the same travel dilemma: SUNY Cortland’s qualified junior Kelly Davey and SUNY Brockport’s Loren Sayers. 

View the GoFundMe here.

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Flynn Burroughs
5 years ago

Respectfully, why not have the athletes simply travel with and stay with their parents. One would assume that most of their parents are attending a meet of this magnitude.

Patricia Eimer
5 years ago

You know it’s possible these young adults could use this as a platform to take a stand to show that swimming is a sport for everyone (including LGBT+) youth and not only boycott the event but encourage other swimmers to do the same to convince the NCAA not to do business in NC but nah…. what’s being a good role model to younger swimmers when there’s a T-shirt that says NCAA D3 Champs and a bag tag on the line ? Like seriously.

Danette Dorsey-Brady
5 years ago

Pretty petty being the college/state is reimbursed for induvidual qualifying athletes travel, food and lodging expenses by the NCAA for the championship. The school does have to pay for relay only swimmers.

Malcolm Neely
5 years ago

Mary Ann Behme White

Richard P. Morrall
5 years ago

If Geneseo and Brockport support the governor, they won’t be using any of my money.

Emily Daniels
5 years ago

But Syracuse can travel to NC for basketball? I’m confused by the ban… does it only apply to certain sports?

5 years ago
Reply to  Emily Daniels

Syracuse is not a state school. It is private and thus, not subject to the rules that apply to public colleges and universities in New York.

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