As the crisp sound of metal skates clash against the ice at the Carolina Ice Palace rink, members of the figure skating club showcase their skills while hosting their first Fundraising Show. With the figure skating club just getting started, junior Jacquelin Zimmerman and other members are determined to spread the word throughout campus to get the recognition it deserves.
Zimmerman, who began figure skating at the age of seven, had the idea of bringing the club to the College after she missed competing on the ice. Having the desire to keep her abilities sharp, Zimmerman decided to make the opportunity happen by emailing the U.S. Figure Skating Association last spring. Zimmerman explains,“They told me how I should go about the process, what school we represent, and other information.” After filling out all the information required, Zimmerman received the email from the USFSA she had been waiting for. It wasn’t until this semester that the club was finally recognized by the College — a memorable moment for Zimmerman. She recounted, “I was so excited that I started screaming; I couldn’t believe it.”
The organization, which has five competing members so far, practices every week depending on different schedules. Five in the morning practices are common. “It’s difficult sometimes balancing schoolwork and getting enough sleep, but we want to be successful and qualify,” she said. To spread the word across campus, the club has an Instagram, Facebook page, Twitter account, the support of campus recreation, and has planned to set up a table in Cougar Mall to spread the word directly to students. Zimmerman said, “Right now we are simply aiming to spread awareness of the club. We are attempting to bring [figure skating] more to the South.” In addition to promoting the word across campus, the team will be performing at numerous games during halftime at South Carolina Stingrays games. She comments, “We are really excited about it. It’s a great opportunity and a fun way to showcase what we work on during practices.”
So far, the club has not yet received sufficient funding. Through different events, such as a fundraising show held at the Carolina Ice Palace in North Charleston, the group is slowly but surely securing funds. Only just beginning, the organization has already received much support from the community, including those involved with the Carolina Ice Palace. Along with this community support, the team is also already beginning to feel a connection with each other. “The whole thing is all starting to become real, and it’s amazing. This team is like my third family, and it feels really good,” said Zimmerman.
For more information on the CofC Figure Skating Team, students can check the team’s official Facebook page, “College of Charleston Intercollegiate Figure Skating,” the collegiate and intercollegiate information page on the USFSA.org website, or can contact President Jacquelin Zimmerman at email@example.com.