Club Spotlight: Colby Figure Skating dazzles on ice!

Colby Echo (Eliza Adams)

Jenny LaChance`20, Joelle Young `18, and Amy Kopec `18 enjoy figure skating as a part of the SGA approved club.” Courtesy of Peter Brown.

Each winter and spring, Colby students flock down to the rink to watch the Men’s and Women’s Ice Hockey teams play head-to-head against their opponents. However, these athletes aren’t the only ones shredding up the rink: the Colby Figure Skating club is an active, student-led club that engages in both recreational and competitive skating throughout the semester.

The club is led by seniors Joelle Young and Jianing Yang. Young, who skated for years before coming to Colby, knew she wanted to get involved when she got to campus. One of the biggest contributions she has made as captain has been the addition of a coach who comes in two times each week to train skaters. Young has served as President of the club since her sophomore year, and said that this addition has helped her achieve her goal of adding more programming for both experienced and new skaters.

This February, Colby Figure Skating participated in its first competition. The team, which is registered as an official U.S. Figure Skating Intercollegiate team, sent five people to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to compete against other college students. Club members competed in everything from ice dance to junior and senior ladies free skate, and two students took home medals for their performances in the short program. Young said, “We would love for this to become routine and send 5–10 students each year to compete against other schools. We’ve already racked up some points this February and it would be great to continue this trend.” Sophomore club member Jenny LaChance added, “I would really like to go to more competitions in the future. It’s nice because you don’t have to be at a high level to compete.” LaChance noted that even beginner skaters can work with the coach and attend competitions.

Colby Figure Skating also has goals for the future that its members hope to see come into fruition. Young said, “I would love to have a performance on campus before or after open skate. We’ve also discussed the idea of giving lessons to students as a fundraiser.” The club will also be holding its final Open Skate event of the year on Monday. LaChance noted that one of the great things about these open events is that students come from all different of areas to try out skating. She looks forward to hosting more of these in the years to come.

So what draws club members to the ice? For Young, it’s the challenge and fun that comes with gliding on the ice and mastering new skills. She said, “The sense of accomplishment I feel when I finally get a jump, execute a good spin, or show improvement is unparalleled.” LaChance appreciates how the sport serves as a de-stressor and a time when she only has to focus on the ice beneath her blades. She noted that she enjoyed the sport growing up and was excited to find the Colby Figure Skating table at the club fair last fall.

LaChance and Young noted that the club certainly faces its fair share of challenges. Getting ice time can be tough, and the rink closes late March. Young hopes that the administration will realize how much the club utilizes the space and consider keeping it open for a longer period of time. However, both acknowledged the great support they’ve received from funding through SGA and equipment rentals from the Outing Club.

Interested in becoming involved with Colby Figure Skating? The club, which has an e-mail list of 80 members, is open to anyone, regardless of skating level and experience. For more information, check out Colby Figure Skating’s Facebook page and instagram account: @colbyfigureskating. Be sure to check out the Open Skate event on Monday, March 19th from 7–8:30 p.m.!