Swim, dive program won’t return to Michigan State University

EAST LANSING — Swimming and diving won’t be returning to Michigan State University, a trustee said during a Friday board meeting, despite court rulings that the school is not in compliance with Title IX.

The university’s swimming and diving programs for both men and women were cut in late 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic because, the school said, it could not afford to upgrade facilities to match other Big Ten universities.

An August 2022 court decision faulted the university for violating Title IX rules, which prohibit sexual discrimination in education, but stopped short of ordering the school to reinstate the program.

The program would need a major investment in facilities, something MSU Board Trustee Melanie Foster said MSU does not plan to do now.

The IM Sports West indoor pool, home to the men's and women's MSU swimming and diving teams, pictured Wednesday, March 3, 2021.

“We do not see a viable path to establish a swim and dive program,” Foster said. “Most prohibitively, without sufficient existing fundraising, there is not a path to build a new competition pool without assessing a fee to the entire student body, something we do not wish to do. We appreciate the advocacy those supporting the swim and dive program have shown. While we know this is not the answer supporters are seeking, we feel we owe an honest, transparent and definitive statement on the issue.”

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