UBC Undergraduate Research

Discovering varsity athletics : creating an inclusive community Yu, Allison; Graham, Kayla; Olfato, Miguel; Dosanjh, Gagan; Roughead, Tamara


The purpose of this paper is to understand the current level of interculturalism within the UBC varsity community and to outline recommendations based on our findings. Last year’s project and current literature were reviewed to determine the direction of this project. Thirteen international varsity-athletes were chosen for informal questioning based on personal relationships, and of these thirteen individuals, ten provided responses to our seven pre-determined questions. The three main outcomes were: (1) the majority of participants felt that they were able to contribute to their team culture in a meaningful way and did not feel that they had to abandon any of their traditional identities (2) participants disagreed about whether the UBC Athletics Department sufficiently promotes intercultural values, diversity and inclusivity (3) the majority of participants felt that diversity was celebrated within their teams but still felt that more could be done and provided suggestions based on personal beliefs. Based on these findings, we argued that there is currently a low level of interculturalism within the UBC athletic community. As such, we identified three recommendations to promote interculturalism: (1) to establish periodic discussions with the Thunderbird Athletic Council Team Representatives about the importance of interculturalism (2) to work with UBC’s Athletic Department to provide more opportunities for interaction between international varsity-athletes, beginning with the Athlete Orientation (3) to connect with UBC’s Jump Start Program to discuss opportunities specifically for international student-athletes. The most significant limitation to this paper was time. Our objectives are to implement these recommendations and enhance the university experience for all student-athletes. Unfortunately, we were unable to connect with as many international varsity-athletes as we wanted, or with coaches and administration. Further projects need to be conducted to fill these gaps and to capture a better understanding of the level of interculturalism within the UBC Athletic community. Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

Item Media

Item Citations and Data


Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada

Usage Statistics