Striving for Gender Equality at Drake

Ever since Title IX was passed, Drake has worked to maintain its gender equality in the athletic department. While it may sound boring, Title IX is of importance to the whole Drake community.

According to the Education Amendments Act of 1972, under Title IX: “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any educational program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”

There are three guidelines to Title IX’s compliance: participation opportunities, scholarship, and the laundry list, which includes benefits and treatment of athletes. All these facets of Title IX must be equal to all students, regardless of their sex.

“Right now, 40 plus years later, many, many, many, many schools, high schools, universities, are not in compliance with Title IX,” Athletic Director Sandy Clubb said.

With a 42% female and 58% male population of student athletes here, Drake is one of these schools which is yet to comply entirely. Of the three guidelines, Drake complies only to the laundry list.

“It’s our job to be proactive, to be in compliance with this law,” Clubb said. “So what do we do at Drake? We have a Title IX coordinator, and with her help we hired a Title IX consultant to come in and do a full-blown compliance review for us and make recommendations.”

Clubb, a 10 year employee here at Drake, deals with the amendment directly in her position. According to USA Today, at the time of her hiring, Clubb was 1 of 25 women athletic directors at the 334 schools with division 1 basketball. In her time here, Clubb has worked with Drake’s compliance issues, and hopes for a “powerful trajectory” in the future.

“I would like to see schools do similiar to what we’re doing now, and that is have a robust Title IX compliance contract with yourself, that basically says, we’re going to be patient, don’t take 20 years to make change, but to put it into an aggressive timeline and put your resources and time behind it,” she said.

Director Clubb is extremely proud of her contributions to Drake’s strife to comply with Title IX. She recalls when the basketball practice facility was being built, she told the coaches she didn’t care if the men want their locker rooms to look different from the women’s, they would be equal for both genders.

“I’m like, they can look like anything you want, I don’t care, but every square inch is going to be identical. Identical,” she said. “And it is. And it didn’t cost us more money to do that, it was just the right thing to do.”

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