Robert Morris University announced today it will no longer field NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey teams as part of a “series of strategic initiatives” intended to “position the university to be amongst the most agile and professionally focused schools in the nation” as it prepares for its upcoming 100th anniversary.
The university’s senior leadership team shared these strategic initiatives, collectively called “RMU: Beyond 100,” at the RMU Board of Trustees annual retreat last week.
According to the announcement, the university “will honor all scholarships currently being received by the student-athletes whose sports are being discontinued and will assist those who wish to transfer. Under NCAA rules, student-athletes who transfer from schools that have eliminated their sport do not have to sit out a season at their new school. The university has pledged to put all of its support services at the disposal of student-athletes, including academic, eligibility, and career advising.”
“We are saddened for the student-athletes who will be unable to continue in their sport at Robert Morris University and are committed to assisting them during this difficult time,” said RMU president Chris Howard in a statement. “However, this is the best course of action to leverage our strategic assets and position us for future growth.”
By discontinuing Division I hockey, the university puts itself in closer alignment with similarly sized institutions, according to the announcement. Approximately 55 student-athletes and seven staff positions will be impacted by this decision, which is effective immediately.