By Sloane M. Perron, Manager of Marketing Communications
The Anna Maria College campus was bustling with activities as the community came together to reminisce and celebrate one another’s accomplishments during Homecoming, Reunion and Family & Friends weekend. Amidst the liveliness of the events, Anna Maria College broke ground at the future home of its Multipurpose Athletics and Baseball Field.
The groundbreaking brought together the Anna Maria College community as faculty, student-athletes, staff, trustees, and coaches who showed their support for the project. The Worcester Red Sox and Worcester Bravehearts also made appearances with their baseball players and mascots.
Kevin Shea from Spectrum News hosted the event and spoke about how college athletics formed the fabric of Anna Maria’s institution and united all who interacted with the community. Click here to see Spectrum’s news coverage of the ceremony.
Deacon Jack Franchi blessed the ground before Anna Maria College President Mary Lou Retelle welcomed the crowd and expressed how the field would benefit generations of future Anna Maria student-athletes.
“The Development of the Whole Person is one of our values. Faculty thoroughly teach their subject matter and know their students by name in a way that makes the Anna Maria community a family,” President Retelle said, “With forty-five percent of our student body consisting of athletes, we see how coaches are integral in helping students to develop not only their athletic potential but also instill virtues of teamwork and respect. This field will enhance these opportunities for our students and fuel their competitive spirit.”
Tim Murray, President of the Worcester Chamber of Commerce and member of Anna Maria’s Board of Trustees, reflected Retelle’s excitement for a new sports venue.
“Athletics is also important to our region as an economic and social building block. We have so many great athletic organizations. The WooSox and Bravehearts, who are here today, are prime examples and found it that important to be here to support us,” Murray said, “Field space is at a premium on this campus and across cities and towns. I can’t wait to see this field complete and to watch many games here.”
Joe Brady ‘96, Director of Athletics, explained the benefits that the future Multipurpose Athletic and Baseball Field has for the school and its students.
“This future complex will be the home of the AMCAT Baseball team, utilized by men’s and women’s soccer and lacrosse, and the women’s softball and field hockey teams,” Brady said, “For me, this new field will help tremendously with scheduling all the demands for field time. It will make it easier for our athletes and help them academically by giving the college more flexibility to schedule classes, practices, and games. It will be a game changer in so many ways. But as an alum, I’m also excited about this happening!”
Kosta Drosidis ‘22 is a student athlete who understands first-hand what a new field would mean for the entire Anna Maria College community. Drosidis is a graduate student in Anna Maria’s MBA program, an AMCAT baseball captain and just finished the summer season playing for the Worcester Bravehearts.
“I love baseball! When I played baseball in Holden. I knew about Anna Maria. When Coach Briand recruited me, I couldn’t believe that I was going to finally be able to wear the AMCAT uniform and bring home wins for the College. I’m also so proud to be one of the Bravehearts!” Drosidis said. “I am so excited for the future of this college and the baseball team.”
During the ceremony, President Retelle was especially honored to share that an alumna from the Class of 1972 donated a gift of $1,000,000 to the college as she challenged fellow alumni and friends to support the college and the Build Up, Rise High Campaign that is funding this field and future campus facilities.
President Retelle noted that Anna Maria is also working with foundations and the government to advance its programs. Last year the college received nearly $2 million in federal funds to support master’s degree students in our social work and counseling psychology programs. And earlier this year Senators Markey and Warren secured $1 million for Anna Maria to provide Mental Health First Aid training to public safety organizations. And currently, Anna Maria is working with Congressman McGovern on funds to enhance its first responder and nursing simulation training facility.
Anna Maria College thanks its community members in advance for any gifts and donations which can be made here.
View the full groundbreaking ceremony below: