Cumberland Times-News

Opinion

September 22, 2013

Student-athletes shouldn’t receive preferential treatment

As a Cumberland resident, I can certainly appreciate all of the hype about local sports, especially with football season finally rolling around, but there has got to be a line drawn somewhere.

There is too much emphasis put into sports for students attending high school and college, and it is not fair to those students who choose not to take that route.

In high school, not only are students excused from classes, tests and full days of school to go to a game or practice, but coaches are allowed to pull members of the squad from class so they can talk in the hallway about things I can only imagine to be significantly less important to the schooling process than trigonometry, biology, etc.

At Allegany College of Maryland, one of my instructors was sure to inform the class that if we were to be sick and needed to miss class, we should not be surprised or caught off-guard if he were to ask to see a doctor’s note.

When a couple of students were talking about their sports schedule, however, he was sure to wish them good luck and tell them that they could miss as much class time as they needed.

This letter does not even begin to dabble into the unfairness that goes into sports scholarships versus academic scholarships, but I am certain my frustration with the category as a whole is quite evident.

We need to treat all students with fairness, which, in the case of Cumberland student-athletes, may require pulling back some of the glitz and glory, and for the more academic and/or non-athletic students, giving recognition where it is due.

After all, professional athletes are not the ones who end up running the world.

Hannah Jenkins

Cumberland

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