by Shane McAdams
Quincy University athletic teams are gearing up for their next season. However, travel expenses and new gear for the teams adds quite the expense for athletic teams. Because of these extra costs, athletic teams at QU work fundraisers to raise the money needed. These athletes aren’t going door to door selling cookies though, they work for a security company named CSC security for the Iowa Hawkeyes Football games.
Players from basketball, baseball, and men’s volleyball load up onto buses at 2:30 a.m. to travel to Iowa and fundraise. Players arrive at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City at 5:00 a.m., and are out working before the sun comes up every time the Hawkeyes play at home.
The jobs vary from game to game for the QU athletes working security. QU students do everything from parking cars, taking tickets, monitoring tailgates, guarding the field, directing traffic, and securing sensitive areas. But just what does that mean for the QU student athletes when they are on the job?
It means QU athletes are on their feet for hours on end. It is not uncommon for workers to spend almost 18 hours on their feet manning their posts. Workers are also expected to keep their positions manned no matter the weather. This could mean that one weekend workers are standing in the sun sweating for 15 hours, or they could be made to stand at their position in the middle of a rain or snow storm.
Another thing that QU student athletes have to deal with are the fans. One of the many jobs students are expected to perform is managing the parking lots and tailgates. This means that they are interacting with fans from both teams as well as many intoxicated and unruly fans.
This can be one of the hardest parts of the job. Fans can be extremely fun to interact with. However, they can also be extremely difficult to handle especially when the fans are intoxicated. fans can be the happiest people, and they can also be very aggressive and disorderly. QU students working the games are instructed not to be physical with fans, however they are also instructed to defend themselves if the need arises.
After hours of being in their feet, QU student working the event finally get a brief reprieve from their duties when the game starts. Workers are given the first the quarters of the game to rest, eat, and in many cases sleep. however simply because the game ends doesn’t mean the QU student workers job is done.
Students often are required to stay hours after the game is over to guide pedestrians safely out of the stadium and direct traffic. QU students become responsible for directing up to eight lanes of traffic all while helping pedestrians and other fans cross the street safely.
Only when all the traffic and pedestrians are safely directed away from the stadium and on their way home, is the day over for QU student athletes. QU student athletes often end their days working tiered and sweaty as well as physically and mentally drained. They then load back up on the busses and vans that they arrived in and drive back to the QU campus. By the time QU student athletes arrive back on campus, it’s not uncommon for them to have been awake for almost 24 hours.
QU student athletes are constantly working to better themselves at their chosen sport, as well as keeping up with school work being full time students. This alone takes an enormous amount of grit and determination. However, many QU student athletes go above and beyond for their teams by working 24 hour days on the weekends to raise money for their teams.
Photos courtesy of Denny Sinnock and Iowa Hawkeyes athletics.