FANS in the Stands, organized by Barbara Anderson, professor and chair of speech and communication, is letting faculty at Pierce College know that attending sports events at Pierce can get them a taste of her homemade brownies.
Anderson explained the importance of encouraging others to attend the sports events.
“I admire these students that get out there and whether the team’s winning or losing, they give it all they got,” Anderson said. “They represent Pierce; they work hard. They’re not just athletes, they’re students too.”
FANS (which is an acronym for Faculty Administrators ‘N’ Staff) in the Stands started in the fall of 2007.
Anderson, who is also the director of the honors program at Pierce, would pick one game per team and send out e-mails to all faculty and staff who were on the Pierce e-mail system.
In an effort to spice things up a bit, Anderson gives out prizes and brownies to the people who do show up, which includes Pierce President Robert Garber and about 10 to 15 faculty members.
Anderson, who used to run track in high school, understands that being an athlete does not mean that everything else in life gets the back seat.
While some students struggle in class, athletes also have to worry about how they will perform at the next game.
“These are real people that take time out of their life to have an additional experience at Pierce,” Anderson explained. “I think we should support that and appreciate them.”
Richard Barraza, one of the captains of the volleyball team at Pierce, appreciates Anderson taking time out of her schedule to watch the games.
“She’s probably one of our biggest supporters. It’s awesome to have her there,” Barraza said.
Anderson is absolutely dedicated to supporting the athletes. On one occasion, she left a debate tournament and drove over from another school to a swim meet at Pierce just to bring the team some homemade brownies.
Although the swim meet ended up being cancelled before her arrival, she was happy to share her brownies with the people left practicing.
Athletic director Bob Lofrano is always happy to see faculty supporting the students they teach.
“I think it’s really wonderful when faculty takes time out of their busy day to come watch their students participate in an intercollegiate activity,” Lofrano said.
Philosophy professor Betty Odello doesn’t mind putting in the time.
“I love going to the games. It is marvelous,” she said. “It’s fabulous to see the students competing and doing so well.”
Anderson is working toward getting more faculty members to the games and psychology instructor Ann Hennessey feels that this is key.
“I really can’t comprehend why more faculty do not make the time to come out and cheer on our students, but maybe that will shift in a more positive direction in the future,” Hennessey said.
Anderson is always trying to think of new ways to get more people to come to the games – which is when the idea for the Brahma Bug came about.
She thought of donating her old Volkswagen Bug to Pierce, painting it red and slapping some horns on the top end of the Bug. If all goes well with insurance and such, it will be the college’s first mascot car.
Although Anderson is done going to games this semester, she is eager to start all over again in the fall.