#15 of 30in30: Community College Sports

Did you know that six of our community colleges have sports teams that play in a national conference?

What is it?

The conference is called the National Junior College Athletic Association, or NJCAA.  It is the national governing body for two-year college athletics, covering junior college and community colleges nationwide. During the 2010-2011 academic school year nearly 60,000 students competed in this conference. The NJCAA is the second largest national intercollegiate sports organization. It falls second to the NCAA.

 And one more thing… ever heard of Larry Johnson? (I’m sure you have) He actually started playing college basketball through this conference and eventually moved on to the NCAA where he played for the University of Nevada. After finishing up college he  became the No. 1 draft pick in the NBA in 1991.

Who is it helping?

The NJCAA allows full-time student athletes attending community colleges to learn how to balance their school work while also being a part of a nationally competitive team. In addition to that– those extra two years give the athletes more time to mature at an academic level, as well as an athletic level, before going on to complete their college degree at a four-year institution.

RCC's Baseball Team: The Gulls

Where is it offered?

Six of our colleges participate in this national conference. Some carry more sports than others but as the level of interest increases so will the programs offered. Below, I’ve broken down VCCS’s participation in the NJCAA according to college and what sport they offer.

Danville Community College

  • Men’s Baseball

New River Community College

  • Men’s Baseball

Northern Virginia Community College

  • Men’s
    • Basketball
    • Lacrosse
    • Soccer
  • Women’s
    • Basketball
    • Volleyball

Patrick Henry Community College

  • Men’s
    • Baseball
    • Basketball
    • Soccer
  • Women’s
    • Basketball
    • Soccer
    • Softball

Rappahannock Community College

  • Men’s Baseball

Wytheville Community College

  • Men’s Basketball
  • Women’s Volleyball

What are we learning from it?

These sports provide an opportunity for college students to continue their interest in athletics through college. Four-year institutions are known to use these teams, at the two-year level, to recruit players for their nationally ranking teams. So who knows — you could be the next Larry Johnson.

And don’t forget about the additional benefits of competitive team sports. Being a part of a team builds skills that can later be applied to a work environment. On a team you learn how to manage your time, work through challenges and meet your goals. So even if you’re not the number one draft pick for the NBA — you’ll be a shining star in your career field.

What does the future hold for it?

As of right now, we have six of our 23 colleges participating and there is definitely room for growth because all of our colleges have sports teams that play at a club level. (If you aren’t sure which sport your school has — find your school’s website for more information.)


Editor’s Note: 30 Ways in 30 Days Virginia’s Community Colleges are Elevating Virginia is a month-long blog series dedicated to exploring some of the many creative and inspiring ways our colleges are helping people find and create opportunity. The series is part of the VCCS tribute to National Community College Month. To read more of the series just click on the “30 ways in 30 days” category.

4 Responses to “ #15 of 30in30: Community College Sports ”

  1. I’d just like to correct the information in this article. While New River does have a club basketball team, our baseball team is the only NRCC team playing under NJCAA guidelines. Thank you for your interest in our sports teams!

    Dr. Ben Kramer
    Activities Counselor
    540-674-3600, ext. 4431

  2. Thanks Dr. Kramer! I went ahead and made that correction to the post. We’ve got 14 more posts left in our series and hope you stay tuned to see what else we’ve got going on around Virginia’s Community Colleges!


  3. WCC also has a pep band in which performs for the WCC Men’s Basketball home games, as well as the NJCAA tournament. We finished our third season this year. Our band consists of WCC students, high school students, and community members in the college’s service region.

    Gerald Goad
    Online Academic Advisor – WCC
    WCC Pep Band Director

  4. Wow! I didn’t know they traveled with the team for tournaments. A band makes all the difference to the players and fans. Pep bands really know how to pump up the crowd!

    Thanks for posting Gerald :)


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