Women’s Wrestling Opportunities In College

Women’s Wrestling Opportunities In College

Ishani Morales, Herald Staff

Editor’s Note: Ishani has been a wrestler at Holyoke High School for the past four years, and won the the Massachusetts State Championship in 2020.  She will wrestle for East Stroudsburg University in the fall of 2021.

Women’s wrestling is the largest growing sport in the country by far. Numerous reports across the U.S. have been showing the uprising in number of girls wrestling state by state. On average a lot of young girls start off wrestling in high school, where thousands of girls find their true love for the sport of wrestling. In the past after the long 4 year run many girls often struggled to find where to further their academics whilst pursuing their athletic careers and dreams. Now more and more options arise for girls to make their transition from high school wrestling to the next big step in life.

As of January 2020 the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) had officially awarded division ll and division lll status women’s wrestling programs as being “Emerging Sports” within the organization. “This is another exciting and monumental step forward for women’s wrestling in America. This will indeed change the lives of many young people across the nation, and also impact the lives of generations of female wrestlers to come. We thank the tireless efforts of the vast coalition of organizations and leaders that have worked together to reach this great achievement. We look forward to continued growth and expanded opportunity for women in college wrestling,” said Rich Bender, Executive Director of USA Wrestling.

Now a year later in January 2021 many new avenues and routes have presented themselves. Multiple ivy league universities have written letters demonstrating their commitment to include and provide great clubs and programs to widen the range for young women out there. These universities include The University of North Carolina, Columbia university, Harvard university, and Princeton. This has been a big thing for young women out there to compete at a higher level and accomplish their dreams of going to amazing colleges like these. The pursuit of pushing forward women’s wrestling at the D1 collegiate level has been a big one. The very first college to have a D1 would be Presbyterian college in Clinton, South Carolina. Following that would be Sacred heart university in Fairfield, Connecticut with their first season to hopefully take place this 2021-22’ season.


Although most people would love to wrestle for a university many just do not have the program available. Another route many take would be to qualify for an RTC. RTC’s are commonly known as Olympic Regional Training Centers where plenty of quality athletes train. These RTC’s are affiliated exclusively with local top universities. This is a popular route for many women who go into universities that don’t have a solidified program set. RTC’s have their pros and cons but it is without a doubt a solid way to get an athletes wrestling game up by training with the best and being led by skilled coaches. 


With more and more updates with women’s wrestling. The possibilities seem endless. The good news just keeps rolling in. The future is extremely bright for womens wrestling!