BOZEMAN – On Thursday night, Montana State’s women’s basketball team got a win over North Dakota. But the big story wasn’t the women on the court, but the girls behind the scenes.
The Montana State Bobcats held their first-ever National Girls and Women in Sports Day during the UND game. Almost 20 young girls came out to help the Bobcats run every aspect of their game-day operations — everything from statistics to promotions to reporting and even radio broadcasting.
“The goal, overall, is really just to expose girls to all of the different things they can do in their lives with sports,” said associate athletic director of marketing Bethany Cordell.
The girls held job as ticket takers, they helped the stats department, ran marketing jobs and in-game promotions, controlled the public address announcements and even went live on the Cats radio broadcast.
“The National Girls and Women in Sports Day is a national initiative to raise awareness for the extraordinary women and girls that are doing great things in sports, both on the field and on the administrative side,” Cordell said.
And the girls really enjoyed their experience and some even got to be the boss for the day.
“It’s really fun. I’ve never gotten to do it before,” said Jada Davis, who assisted Cordell with Montana State’s marketing efforts.
But this goes beyond their experience for one night. The sports world is typically seen as a male-dominated profession, but the Bobcats are trying to break the glass ceiling.
“We want them thinking about what they can do in sports. I was lucky enough to know early on that I wanted to work in sports and so the opportunity to give that experience to other girls and show them, ‘Hey, you see a lot of boys that work in sports, but it’s a thing that girls can do, too,” Cordell smiled.
And it’s already rubbing off.
“(My favorite part) is seeing all the new sports that I can join when I’m in college,” Davis said excitedly.
And this will become an annual event as it continues to inspire young girls in Montana to chase their dreams in sports and any other aspiration they have, regardless of social perceptions
“Hopefully, if even just one of them, 10, 15 years from now has found a career in sports, she can kind of look back and pinpoint this as one of the moments that she knew this is what she really wanted to do,” Cordell said.