Thursday, May 24, 2018

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The Sailing Team at SDSU practices from 12 to 3 p.m. every Wednesday and Saturday at Southwestern Yacht Club. (Credit: Sailing Team) The Sailing Team at SDSU practices from 12 to 3 p.m. every Wednesday and Saturday at Southwestern Yacht Club. (Credit: Sailing Team)

Student Organization Spotlight: SDSU Sailing Team

The SDSU Sailing Team guides beginner and advanced sailors.
By Ryan Schuler

The San Diego State University Sailing Team is a student organization that provides guidance and a supportive environment for beginner and advanced sailors.

Through the organization, sailors have the opportunity to build their knowledge of sailing and participate in a series of competitive races, known as regattas, against other universities.

SDSU Sailing Team founder and president Gillian Dean said she created the organization because she wanted to sail competitively, but no campus team existed. After completing the necessary paperwork, finding a yacht club to host the team and recruiting members, Dean was able to make the Sailing Team at SDSU a reality.

“(It’s amazing) Watching us grow and succeed in the short amount of time that we’ve existed,” Dean said. “We’re doing incredibly well for a startup team in our conference, and I’m really excited to see where we’ll be in a year.”

How has this organization positively affected your time at SDSU?

The team has allowed me to create a lot of strong bonds with a variety of students here that I most likely would've never known if we all didn’t have sailing as our uniting factor. I love to network and meet new people, and the sailing team has allowed me to do that with not only other students, but also with SDSU faculty and alumni.

Is your organization open to all majors or is it major specific?

The sailing team is open to all students of all different majors.

When it comes to finding new members for your organization, what type of students are you looking for?

Sailors don’t need to have prior sailing knowledge, but we're looking for people who have enthusiasm for the sport and who are as eager as the rest of us to get out on the water each day.

When are your meetings and is there a membership fee?

We practice from 12 to 3 p.m. every Wednesday and Saturday at Southwestern Yacht Club in La Playa and dues are $350 per semester.

Does your organization have any events coming up?

We have the South Designate, a regatta in Long Beach, on March 25-26. This will be our last regatta for the semester. Next fall, we are planning to hold a fundraiser for our alumni. When we’re more established, we would like to do an alumni regatta, but as for now we just practice and compete.

How can students find more information about your organization?

If people are interested in joining the team, they can visit our Facebook page or Instagram profile. Additionally, prospective sailors can email us at

Who has made a significant impact on your organization?

SDSU alumni have had a huge impact on our team. SDSU had an active sailing team up until the late 1990s, but disbanded due to a variety of factors. The alumni who sailed have been very involved by helping lower startup costs, spreading the word about the club, and encouraging us every step of the way.