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ShagBag HAPPY ANNIVERSARY TITLE IX “


No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any educational program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”


Thirty-seven incon- spicuous words were signed into law as a portion of the Education Amendments of 1972. You might know them as Title IX, which is in the midst of a milestone 40th birthday celebration. While unassuming in


verbiage, the inception of Title IX was a groundbreak- ing moment for women across the nation who had striven to get an equal education to participate in collegiate athletics with that


same level of fairness and equality afforded to their male counterparts. But women’s golf was


already a leader in the world of organized women’s intercollegiate athletics. The first national intercol- legiate championship—in any women’s sport—was for golf, held in 1941. When JoAnne Gunder-


son Carner received the first women’s golf scholarship from Arizona State in 1957, Title IX wasn’t even in the


conversation. But in the years that followed, some of the world’s top golfers wouldn’t have enjoyed nearly the same educational op- portunities without the law. After creating a women’s


golf program at the Uni- versity of Tulsa in 1974-75, coach Dale McNamara recruited a young Nancy Lopez from New Mexico to give a kick-start to the fledgling program. Lobby- ing to the athletic direc- tor for a full scholarship, McNamara’s signing of the young Lopez was a direct product of Title IX. At the time Title IX was passed, girls and women in sports made a relatively small footprint in comparison to their male counterparts. The total number of girls playing high school sports and women partici- pating on the varsity collegiate level was 323,987


Title IX has greatly impacted girls’ participation in athletics.


in 1971-72 before the legislation, as compared to 3,837,301 males. In the 2009-10 school


year, the number of female participants blossomed to 3,359,097, with a 1,072 percent increase in high school involvement. In the NCAA’s gender-equity sur- vey completed in 2005-06, women accounted for more than $1.8 million of Divi- sion I scholarship funding, nearly matching the men’s $2.19 million mark. Today, girls involved


in sports might not be aware that there was a time when their mothers and grandmothers could not get into the college of their choosing or earn a scholarship to participate in collegiate athletics, but can you imagine a golf world without the likes of Lopez, Annika Sorenstam or Northern California native Juli Inkster? Thanks in part to the opportunities afforded by Title IX, you don’t have to. –Jessica Lantz


12 / NCGA.ORG / FALL 2012


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