Fall not only brings UW Tacoma students new opportunities inside the classroom, but outside the classroom as well, with a large variety of clubs and other ways students can be involved. One that has gone almost completely unnoticed in my two years here on campus are the different sports leagues that the University Y Student Center offers. Every quarter, the Y offers a new selection of different sports that students can participate in — which always includes basketball, volleyball, and several others. 

As an employee at the Y, I am always puzzled when students come into the Y halfway through the school year and tell me they had no idea they even had a Y membership paid for as part of their tuition. For everyone who fits this category, utilize the YMCA! Every student is paying for a membership, and it is not an optional fee, so please make use of it!

This upcoming quarter, the Y will be offering eight different leagues students are able to join for free. This includes basketball, volleyball, 3-on-3 basketball, spikeball, badminton, pickleball, ping pong, and futsal. Basketball will be held on Tuesdays and Thursdays, volleyball will be on Wednesdays, and the rest will be scheduled when both teams are available to play throughout the week. 

The leagues are not only a great way to stay active and keep in shape, but they are also a chance for new and returning students to make new friends. I spoke with league director and current UWT student Zack Shea about the upcoming leagues and what makes them a great opportunity for students. 

“The leagues are a great opportunity to play a sport you enjoy while also connecting and making friendships with fellow students.”

Shea is also one of the many friends I have made through playing in the leagues and both have a passion for trying to get fellow students more involved. We have discussed many different ways of how we can bring student participation up and Shea believes he has found a solution. 

“For the leagues that are not basketball or volleyball, we will match you with yourself and an opponent and schedule a time that will work for both teams.”

With this format, students will be able to fit whichever league they choose into their schedules without having to worry about a specific time they have to make. The biggest drop in participation happens after the first couple weeks of the new quarter, therefore, Shea is hoping this will encourage students to continue playing throughout the quarter. 

“The UY is a beautiful facility with a spacious gymnasium where we host most of our league games. These programs are also free for students to enjoy. Friends of students are always welcome to join leagues as well for a small fee.”

Leagues will run from the first week of October through December 6 and can sign up online at or in person at the University Y Student Center. If you are not able to participate during this quarter, new leagues will be available starting in the winter.