Scholars / Athletes / Leaders

Achieving milestones is not unusual for Brown Athletics, which recently passed the $100 million mark in campaign fundraising and prides itself on developing lifelong leaders.

What makes an athletics program great?

Competitive student-athletes. Top coaches. State-of-the-art facilities. Supportive fans.

But if you ask Mike Daly, the Rothman Head Coaching Chair for Men's Lacrosse at Brown, developing lifelong lessons that go beyond the sport are just as important.

"One core focus of our program is leadership development," says Daly. "We have the opportunity to develop young people's leadership skills and character and to send them off with those tools to succeed in whatever profession they choose. Even as dads and uncles—all of the important roles in life."

Take for example Luke McCaleb '20, captain of the men's lacrosse team. "When I was a starter in the program as a freshman, I was green," says. McCaleb. "But the seniors at the time really took me under their wing and helped me out, from offering tactical strategies to how to balance classwork. And now I have the opportunity to give back and guide others on the team."

When we provide opportunities for student-athletes to compete at the highest level—whether that’s hiring the best coaching staff, funding cross-country travel, or offering leadership training—we’re helping these young men and women to thrive in all of their pursuits.

Jack Hayes Director of Athletics

Athletes by sunsetMcCaleb notes that the annual intensive program, in which lacrosse players train with former military special operations members (pictured), challenges even formerly quiet players to rise up as leaders. After spending last summer at an officer candidate school for the Marine Corps, McCaleb has set his sights on giving back to his country after graduation, applying the values he has developed at Brown. "You're not going to give up on your teammate—or the officer next to you," he says.

Director of Athletics Jack Hayes hears stories like this all the time. "When we provide opportunities for student-athletes to compete at the highest level—whether that's hiring the best coaching staff, funding cross-country travel, or offering leadership training—we're helping these young men and women to thrive in all of their pursuits."

Significant initiatives, therefore, are underway that will both serve Brown's more than 900 student-athletes and 38 varsity programs and match peer schools in the race to recruit, train, and contend at the national level.

Hitting a big benchmark

Fundraising for athletics in the BrownTogether campaign recently surpassed a major milestone, with over $100 million committed to support coaching and programmatic endowments, capital projects, and current-use funding for Brown athletics.

Some of these investments enabled the creation of facilities projects: the sports medicine room and Paul K. Sloan ’97 Football Team Meeting Room within the Berylson Family Football Complex, the Ted Turner ’60 Sailing Pavilion, the softball field and Attanasio Family Field at Murray Stadium, and Phase I of the Marston Boathouse renovation.

Other major gifts focused on recruiting and retaining top coaches at the Division I level, including the establishment of the Excellence in Athletics Fund. Twelve coaching positions have been endowed to help sustain the future of programs, from women's crew to men's hockey.

"It's paramount that our Brown Bears programs are continually looking forward," noted Hayes. "I'm excited by how this tide of support is strengthening our programs and positioning our teams to compete at the championship level."

Building on a legacy

What will the future bring? In order to further enrich student-athlete programs, the department is setting its sights even higher: raising an additional $72 million by the end of the BrownTogether campaign.

Athletics hopes the additional resources will help support capital projects as well as fully fund teams through endowments and bolster its current-use funding for team initiatives—all in service of fueling this pillar of the Brown experience.

"We could not do what we do without University support and the investments of alumni and parents," said Daly. "It really takes a village."

(March 2019)