Don’t let the name fool you — NYU’s Stern Rugby Football Club isn’t just limited to students studying at the prestigious business school. It serves as a unique athletic community for a breadth of NYU undergraduate and graduate students.
Since it was founded in 1996 by a block of business students, the club’s mission has been simple: foster a social community for NYU students by providing the opportunity to learn and play a sport popular in the United States and around the world.
Master of Business Administration candidacy nor experience are required to secure a spot oon the pitch. The club is non-exclusive and welcomes students from all athletic backgrounds and schools within the NYU network. The current team is an eclectic mix of undergraduate and graduate students who represent NYU’s School of Law, the Stern School of Business, Langone Health, the College of Arts and Science, the Gallatin School of Individualized Study and the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development.
Club President and Steinhardt junior William Herrin said this inclusive demographic sets rugby apart from other sports clubs at NYU.
“I’ve noticed that rugby can bring the entire NYU community together, both at the undergraduate and graduate level,” Herrin said. “This makes the club a truly universal organization with the university, allowing students of all backgrounds to meet new friends, network and socialize all while playing the sport of rugby.”
Going back to its business school foundation, Diana Hyde, senior director of Community and Inclusion at Stern, emphasized how impactful extracurriculars like rugby are on the MBA experience.
“Sports, in addition to special interest clubs and affinity clubs, play an important role in the overall experience of NYU Stern MBA students,” Hyde said. “They provide an opportunity to build camaraderie and to network outside of the classroom and beyond traditional industry or sector lines. They bring together students with a shared interest and offer a social experience that complements the rigorous academic and career-related aspects of an MBA program.”
Herrin said he finds networking with graduate students to be beneficial to his professional development as an undergraduate.
“As an undergrad, there are not many clubs, if any, that can allow you to mingle with graduate students,” Herrin said. “This has given me a head start in networking and taught me valuable skills that I can use later on in life.”
This network of future lawyers, doctors and business leaders united as Violets on the pitch is what makes the team so exciting to watch. The unified NYU squad promotes school spirit through athletic competition to the likes of Southeastern Conference football on gameday.
Those wishing to support the club should follow the NYU RFC Facebook page to stay up to date on upcoming events. On March. 2, fans can expect to have a set date, time and location for the marquee Gotham Cup where NYU will take on the Columbia Business School in a battle to be crowned the champion of New York.
A version of this article appeared in the Monday, Feb. 26 print edition. Email Warner Radliff at [email protected]