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Athletics Review Presented to the Board of Trustees

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The Eastern Washington University Board of Trustees (BOT) met Thursday and Friday, Feb. 25-26, for its first scheduled meeting of 2021. Agenda items included an athletics review presentation from The PICTOR Group, the consulting firm hired to conduct an independent study of the long-term sustainability of athletics at the university.

The final analysis and assessment included various scenarios for the university to consider, but no final decision will be made until this spring. The public is invited to submit comments on the report through March 26.

As part of the process, The PICTOR Group reviewed documents, conducted on-site visits, and surveyed internal and external stakeholders – including faculty and student groups. You can read the full report by downloading the PDF on the University Athletics Review website. You can also watch a video of the presentation given to the BOT on Feb. 26 and submit your comments.

Following the presentation, David May, the interim president of Eastern Washington University, sent the following message to university employees and students:

Dear Campus Community,

Today the EWU Board of Trustees received the final report on the Athletics Review, completed by an independent consultant. I want to thank The PICTOR Group for its work over the past several months on this analysis, as well as everyone who took part in providing feedback. The depth and breadth of the information provided in the full report is a demonstration of the seriousness of the approach taken on this important issue. The PICTOR Group has been a true partner with the university, ensuring we have the most accurate and complete data to consider.

The next step in the process of determining what athletics will look like at EWU will be for me to examine the data presented and to ensure that it is contextualized within the structure of Eastern’s overall mission. This will involve, for example, taking some median numbers for cost and checking that against what the actual cost would be here at Eastern. As that process moves forward, I will also be asking to meet with some specific groups of people to get feedback and input on the options that have been presented. Those groups will include the Faculty Organization, leadership with the student government (ASEWU) and the Greek system, representatives from the EWU Foundation Board, the EWU Alumni Association, and staff representatives from across the institution.

In addition to the opportunity to funnel your thoughts through these groups, there is a comment form now available and open to anyone who wishes to make their individual thoughts known to me directly. It is an opportunity for you to weigh in on the options that have been presented to the Board and which of those you think is the best pathway forward for Eastern Athletics. That comment form will be available until March 26. Thank you in advance for your thoughtful input on this important university decision.

Once I have gathered thoughts and feedback from these various sources, I will continue to consult with the leadership team of the university and will prepare a recommendation to the Board of Trustees. That recommendation will be made at the end of April. The Board of Trustees will then make a final decision at its June meeting on the pathway forward.

I look forward to additional conversations and input and again, if you wish to provide your response to the options presented in the report, please do so here: University Athletic Review.

David May
Interim President

The trustees meetings are virtual, and a full agenda as well as links to attend future meetings online can be found on the Board of Trustees website.

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