Many students and faculty members on the Bellevue College campus are unaware of something important: BC has a cheerleading squad. The squad has a faculty advisor, a full team and a full schedule of cheering, but they continue to remain under the radar, so to speak.
Barbara Brodsky, human development instructor, is the faculty advisor for the team. Her reason behind becoming the cheer advisor is simple interest in the sport. Her daughter was a cheerleader in high school and that’s what sparked the interest.
An absence of a football team may be the reason people are oblivious. “Also, a community college isn’t as tight-knit as a high school,” Brodsky explained.
Another factor as to why the cheer squad isn’t well known is that BC and Pierce College are the only community colleges in the state of Washington to have cheerleaders.
“Pierce isn’t even in the league, so the BC cheer squad is by itself when cheering at basketball games,” explained Brodsky.
Bill O’Connor, athletic director here at BC, commented, “Of course I know we have a cheer team. They’re at all the basketball games.” The cheerleaders here at BC are at every home game and every away game. Apart from cheering, they also have fundraisers every quarter.
Michelle Gillespie, a freshman here a BC, was also aware that BC had a cheer team. However, she only knew this due to a cheerleader being in one of her classes and introducing herself as a cheerer.
Gillespie explained that if that cheerleader hadn’t been in the class, she wouldn’t know there was a cheer team. “Maybe if they post signs around campus and advertise that they cheer at basketball games,” said Gillespie.
The team is comprised of 16 members, two of whom are men. There are two squad co-captains for the team, Becca Krier and Kimberly Kitnikone. However, the squad isn’t involved in any cheer competitions like high school squads because the cheer season is shorter.
Brodsky hopes to improve the visibility of the cheer squad this year. She expects all members to participate fully in any events and to be able to do more on and around the campus, such as community events.