When need is met by generosity, the results are extraordinary. Such is the case with impressive new field turf at Wright Stadium, an athletics facility improvement that benefits more than half of all ‘Wick athletes.
The previous field dated to 2006 when the stadium was built and dedicated to the generous Wright family, Oneonta community and business leaders and friends of Hartwick College. Planning began in 2017 to replace that surface with state-of-the-art FieldTurf Vertex, an all-weather, two-layer infill system known to reduce the risk and severity of injuries among athletes.
Trustee emeritus and longtime Hartwick supporter Brian Wright H’02 stepped forward to address the need, as he often does. Wright not only made his own leadership gift, he also posed a challenge to other supporters to fund this important facility. They responded, and the new field was installed last summer.
The impact was immediate. The field is already offering “a competitive advantage in training, in game play, and through recruiting,” says Athletics Director John Czarnecki. “It is helping our players stay healthy and perform at the peak of their abilities.”
Lacrosse player and English major Rachel Hedden ’21 spoke at the field dedication during True Blue Weekend. “This facility is a game changer for all student athletes who work hard on the turf and harder in the classroom,” she told the crowd. “Sometimes the best lessons are learned when you’re wearing cleats and are surrounded by your teammates. On behalf of all student athletes, thank you to the Wright family and all donors for believing in us.”
President Margaret L. Drugovich P’12 echoed the impact of their generosity, saying, “Brian and Josie Wight, your remarkable philanthropy has changed the course of our Hartwick experience.”