Talladega College, a historically Black university in Talladega, Alabama, announced Saturday its intention to launch the country’s second intercollegiate women’s artistic gymnastics team at a Historically Black College and University, in a partnership with Brown Girls Do Gymnastics and the HBCU Gymnastics Alliance. The college follows in the footsteps of Fisk University, which launched the first HBCU college gymnastics team this season.
Like Fisk, Talladega is a NAIA institution—a college athletics association for small colleges and universities in North America.
“This historic moment will have a lasting impact. Establishing a women’s gymnastics team at Talladega College will expand opportunities for HBCU student athletes to compete in a rewarding sport that fosters discipline, confidence and success,” said Talladega College President Gregory J. Vincent in a press release. “Developing our first-ever women’s gymnastics team will also promote student and alumni engagement and pride; enhance the college’s brand; and help create a pipeline of diverse gymnasts.”
Notable Talladega alumni include NFL Hall of Famer and current University of Colorado football coach Deion Sanders, and Wynona Lipman, the first African American elected to the New Jersey Senate.
Since 2015, Brown Girls Do Gymnastics has been a driving force in advocating for gymnasts of color to have an opportunity to continue their athletic and academic careers in an inclusive environment like a HBCU. Talladega joins a 8-year grassroots effort toward inclusion and the creation of new opportunities for gymnasts.
Talladega is also set to host the eighth annual Brown Girls Do Gymnastics Conference on July 18 to 21, 2024.
This is a developing story. It will be updated as more information becomes available.
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Article by Tara Graeve
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