Diversity of football team is placed under microscope

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Pacific University’s own Eric Geitzen is on the verge of completing his senior capstone project involving the diverse culture of the Boxer football team.

As a football player and sociology major with connections to larger research projects on campus, he decided to combine his interests to develop his project. Geitzen described the main focus as the interactions between two specific groups on the Pacific University football team, Hawaii athletes and mainland athletes.

From there Geitzen discusses the different aspects of the group’s relationships; whether that relationship be positive, negative or a little bit of both.

The method of Geitzen’s project included running two focus groups containing six participants each. He sat down with each focus group and asked them a wide range of questions pertaining to his main focus. He believes he was able to gain a pretty solid grasp on the working parts of the relationship between the two groups.

Geitzen said he is still working on the final analysis but so far he stated, “I have learned a lot from this project.”

He has found that the white privilege seems to have played a role amongst parts of the relationship between the Hawaii and mainlander athletes on the football team.

When asked about the benefit of his project for people, Geitzen responded that he hopes people can learn to value other cultures as much as they value their own. That is a lot to ask, but by taking on parts of a person’s culture without fully understanding it, allows for the devaluing of that culture, he said.


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