Working in the world of the opposite sex, Part I

Vickie Winterhalter

Here at Villanova, one of the most highly anticipated sports every year is men’s basketball. With the excitement of the roaring crowd, the excellent match-ups between rivals and the chance to claim all the glory of a national title, the Villanova men’s basketball team shows its Wildcat spirit with each basket made.

On a team that is dominated by male players and coaches, one girl stands out in the crowd, ready to show that she can handle all the boys. Erin Wade, a sophomore, is one of the managers of the male basketball team. Even though she is not on the court with the boys, Wade does her share of work in the athletic department using the management skills she learned in high school as an ice hockey manager.

As a college freshman, Wade worked in the Athletic Office, using her spare time to answer the phone, run errands for the coaches, help with recruiting mailings and coordinate player’s meals.

In her second year at Villanova, Wade has taken a more active role on the court as manager. She is responsible for keeping the water bottles filled, handing out towels and keeping shooting statistics for the players.

As any of Wade’s friends can confirm, she spends all of her spare time in Jake Nevin or the Pavilion.

Being a woman in a man’s world can be hard at times, and while the gender lines are slowly being blurred in the working world, women still have a great number of hurdles to overcome daily. Here at Villanova, it is no different.

“I think the more that gender lines are blurred, the better,” Wade said. “As a strong independent female, I feel that whatever I set my mind to, I can do.”

“Having a male tell me I cannot do something is only motivation for me to work harder and rise above,” Wade said. “I think there is discrimination in all fields of work. It would be tough to deal with, but I would try to look at it in a positive light.”

When asked if it was weird to be working with such a large number of men, Wade had a enthusiastic response.

“I love being a girl working with a bunch of guys,” Wade said. “I look up to all 14 of our players like they are my brothers. We argue like siblings, but we have a lot of fun together, too.”

She added, “I think it’s a wonderful idea to have a female working for a man’s team. Having someone from the opposite gender work with others is always a good idea because new ideas and a different perspective can sometimes be helpful in decision making.”