MEDFORD / SOMERVILLE, Mass. (August 28, 2018) – Tufts University has provided Somerville’s youth athletic programs with daily access to its athletic fields and facilities for more than 450 hours this year in an effort to address the lack of urban space. The arrangement – which has benefited sports such as basketball, softball, tennis, soccer, lacrosse and baseball – continues Tufts’ commitment to supporting the university’s host communities.
Sports fields and large indoor spaces can be difficult to find in the town of Somerville, New England’s most densely populated town. Those that are available are often only available at a higher price.
An agreement between Tufts and Somerville has allowed the city’s young athletes to organize daily practice and matches indoors at the Carzo Cage and Cousens gymnasium and outdoors at the Fletcher tennis courts, C court, Triangle terrain and Ounjian field, a state-of-the-art AstroTurf playing surface.
By opening up its fields and facilities to the community, the university is able to save money on city setup costs and reduce congestion in other spaces in Somerville.
In addition to athletic events and training, Tufts hosted the Somerville Scrapheap Showdown at the Gantcher Family Sports and Convocation Center and the Higgins Foundation annual fundraiser at Carzo Cage. Somerville High School also hosted graduation drills for the Highlander Class of 2018 at the Tufts’ Gantcher Center in June.
“We are delighted to welcome our young neighbors to the Tufts campus and encourage their sport participation,” said Anthony P. Monaco, President of Tufts University. “Tufts is dedicated to supporting our host communities as part of our educational mission, and we look forward to continuing to work with the Town of Somerville.”
“It is an absolute pleasure and joy to work with Tufts to alleviate the pressures on our current lots and to help fill land shortages,” said Jill Lathan, Director of Parks and Recreation for the City of Somerville. “The city has more recreational and athletic needs than ever before, and given the current availability in Somerville, we couldn’t provide space for everyone without Tufts. The university staff are very friendly, helpful and accommodating. We look forward to an ongoing partnership between Somerville and Touffes. “
Tufts supports its local communities through a variety of programs, resources and volunteer efforts, a number of which involve Tufts student-athletes. For example:
- In January, the Tufts’ Cousens Gymnasium hosted the 2nd annual Tufts Classic, boys and girls basketball games between rival teams Medford Mustangs and Somerville Highlanders. During this year’s Classic, winter clothing was collected and donated to the Somerville Homeless Coalition.
- Tufts annually invites students from Somerville High School to come to campus for the SAT preparation program “Let’s Get Ready”.
- And 13 Somerville community nonprofits received grants from the Tufts Neighborhood Service Fund, funded by donations from faculty and university staff.
For more information on team specific community engagement, please visit: http://www.gotuftsjumbos.com/information/saac.
To learn more about how Tufts is involved in its local communities, visit https://communityrelations.tufts.edu/.
About Tufts University
Tufts University, located on the campuses of Boston, Medford / Somerville and Grafton, Massachusetts, and Talloires, France, is recognized among the leading research universities in the United States. Tufts enjoys a worldwide reputation for academic excellence and for preparing students as leaders in a wide range of professions. A growing number of innovative teaching and research initiatives span all of Tufts’ campuses, and collaboration between faculty and students in undergraduate, graduate and professional programs in the schools of the university is widely encouraged. .