A portion of our banner, first seen at the January 2023 NAC, that showcases schools with NCAA fencing programs.
Updated, Jan. 31, 2023: Added dates and times for all panels and important updates about who may ask questions at certain panels as well as why these sessions won't be recorded.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — When more than 2,000 fencers gather in Denver for the 2023 Junior Olympics, they won’t just have the chance to compete against the nation’s top Juniors and Cadets.
They’ll also have the chance to hear from some of the nation’s top collegiate fencers and fencing coaches.
Introducing USA Fencing College Conversations, a series of five panels — each one offering an opportunity for fencers and their parents to learn more about the realities of collegiate fencing.
While the College Conversations program is making its debut at the 2023 Junior Olympics, it’s actually the continuation of a similar program hosted at the 2022 Summer Nationals in Minneapolis. At that tournament, USA Fencing hosted a College Day that covered similar topics and was so successful that the sessions were standing-room only.
The College Conversation panels will be held Feb. 18 and Feb. 19 inside the Denver Convention Center (which, conveniently, is also where Junior Olympics is being held). All sessions will be held in Meeting Rooms 102-106.
Panels will include:
NCAA Student Athlete Panel (2–2:45 p.m.): A discussion about what it’s like to fence in college from a personal perspective. Panelists will discuss how to balance being a student-athlete while still managing their academic course load.
Growing the Relationship Between National Governing Bodies and the NCAA (3–4 p.m.): USA Fencing CEO Phil Andrews and USOPC Director of Collegiate Partnerships Sarah Wilhelmi will discuss the importance of building the relationship between NGBs, USA Fencing and the NCAA moving forward — and what’s already being done to accomplish exactly that.
Yes, You Can Fence in College! (4:30–6 p.m.): A panel that will bring to light the number of universities that have college fencing — particularly on the women’s side. Attendees will leave knowing that even students not being recruited by the biggest-name schools can still fence in college.
Recruiting 101: Do's and Don'ts of Reaching out to College Coaches (6:30–8 p.m.): An overview of the important recruiting dates and timelines high school athletes and parents need to know.
Recruiting 101: Do's and Don'ts of Reaching out to College Coaches (8:30–10 a.m.): An overview of the important recruiting dates and timelines high school athletes and parents need to know.
Westward Expansion: Developing New NCAA Fencing Programs on the West Coast (11:45 a.m.–12:45 p.m.): Juan Ignacio Calderon, head fencing coach at UC San Diego, discusses how — and why — more schools in the West should add NCAA fencing programs.
Note: The Recruiting 101 sessions are identical and offered twice to allow as many people as possible to attend. That means you'll only need to attend one.
Because of NCAA recruiting policies and other rules, please note the following: