HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hawaii Pacific University has announced that its cheerleading and dance programs will be restructured as part of an overall HPU strategic planning process.
The university on Wednesday said the restructure is "intended to bring all university activities into alignment for the future health, financial well being and sustainability of the university."
Both the cheerleading and dance programs have been among the nation's most successful in competitions over the past decade, with the large cheer squad recently winning its 10th consecutive National Cheerleading Association championship. The small cheer squad and dance programs have also won multiple titles.
HPU says expenses for the programs have grown significantly in recent years, and to bring both costs and program expectations in alignment with other athletics endeavors, university leaders made the decision to reorganize the teams.
HPU is continuing scholarship assistance for returning cheerleaders and dancers so that no current program participants will be disadvantaged by the change. The squads will not compete as teams at national cheer and dance competitions, though members will be able to take part in individual competition, if they so choose.
HPU Athletics and Campus Recreation Director Darren Vorderbruegge said he is looking forward to working with the coaches and athletes as the programs transition to their new status. "The individuals involved with these programs have been well recognized for their success, and I have every reason to believe that as the programs now change, the personal commitment of the coaches and students will ensure that the tradition of excellence continues," Vorderbruegge said. "I expect that cheer and dance will contribute to an even better fan experience at HPU athletic events and be great representatives of our student body and our university in the community and around Hawai'i."