DAVIS (CBS13) – UC Davis is adding women’s beach volleyball and women’s equestrian to its Athletic Department.

The Aggies needed to add the women’s programs in order to comply with Title IX. It requires schools to offer men’s and women’s athletics proportionate to the undergraduate student body. In the 2016-17 school year women made up 59.4% of the student body – a 4.3% increase from 2011-12.

UC Davis started the process to decide on the new sports in November, including putting together a campus working group, sending out a survey and holding a public meeting. Nearly 600 people responded to the survey. The group looked at how the suggested sports met certain criteria – number of participation opportunities, philanthropic support, competitive opportunity and conference affiliation. Once the group decided on beach volleyball and equestrian it sent the recommendation to Chancellor Gary S. May for approval.

UC Davis will compete in the Big West Conference for beach volleyball. It is now the 7th school to compete in the sport in the conference. Planning will start immediately to decide on a training and competition facility on campus. An anonymous alum donated what the school is calling “a generous gift.” A national search is underway to hire a head coach.

Women’s equestrian will compete nationally under the National Collegiate Equestrian Association. The team will compete against large schools, including Fresno State, Georgia and Texas A&M. The host team provides the horses used in the competition. The equestrian team will partner with the School of Veterinary Medicine and the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. UC Davis is currently raising money to build a state-of-the-art equine performance center, in addition to the already exisiting UC Davis Equestrian Center. A national search is also underway for a head equestrian coach.

Both teams will start operating in 2018-19.

Other women’s sports at UC Davis are basketball, cross country, field hockey, golf, gymnastics, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming & diving, tennis, indoor track & field, outdoor track & field, volleyball and water polo.

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