A new tuition support program offered by Clemson University is seeking to bring wheelchair tennis student-athletes to the university by allowing them to pay in-state tuition.
The introduction of the program comes several months after Clemson announced in March it had organized its first adaptive sports tennis team.
Students will be able to pay their four-year tuition at the in-state amount with out-of-state tuition waivers. Officials at the school said waivers are necessary to have a thriving adaptive sports program, according to a release.
“Making tuition more affordable to potential adaptive student-athletes gives them an increased incentive to travel to Clemson to play and earn their degree,” said Jasmine Townsend, director of the university’s Adaptive Sports and Recreation Lab. “Clemson leads the way in many different types of athletic programs, and these waivers help us attract the best and brightest people to our campus so we can start to also lead the way in collegiate adaptive sports.”
Clemson has offered out-of-state tuition waivers since 2017 for students with cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injuries and other impairments or disabilities through its paralympic soccer program.
“Growing an adaptive sport community on campus helps us meet ClemsonForward’s Living priority specific to sustaining athletics, wellness and recreation programs, and achieving inclusive excellence,” Townsend said. “These programs also help encourage growth in adaptive sports at the community recreation level, because students now have a collegiate goal that’s a possibility for them to achieve.”
The university’s adaptive sports tennis team made up of Clemson student Marden Miller and Clemson lecturer Jeff Townsend has so far competed in several collegiate events. Jeff won singles and doubles champ for the B division during the wheelchair tennis championships last October in Hilton Head.
“Our ultimate goal is to create a thriving adaptive sport community here at Clemson,” Jeff said. “These waivers are an important step toward ensuring adaptive athletes come to recognize Clemson University as the best place to compete on a collegiate level.”
Find out more about the adaptive sports program at Clemson University at clemson.edu/cbshs/departments/prtm/programs/clemson-adaptive-sport-recreation.