The UTD Fencing Club gears up for the April 22 intercollegiate championships at Texas State University.
The team will send 12 students to compete for each of the three weapons: the épée, foil and sabre, making it 36 members in total. The tournament is hosted by the Southwest Intercollegiate Fencing Association, or SWIFT. Deepika Krishnan , a senior neuroscience major and event coordinator of the Fencing Club, said that UTD’s team maintains a welcoming culture despite the pressure of the upcoming tournament.
“A lot of times competitive sports … can be really competitive in a negative way,” Krishnan said. “You know, people backstabbing each other, not wanting to see the other person grow because the other person wants to be on top. I don’t think our organization is like that at all. I think everybody there wants to see the other people succeed.”
The club has around 50 active members who range from beginners to experienced. Their Discord also hosts 157 members who vary in levels of participation.
“It’s a great way to meet friends and also just a great way to get some physical activity in,” Krishnan said.
The training season is competitive for the Fencing Club, as only 36 members vying for a spot in the tournament will be able to attend. There can only be four members per team with one team for each of three weapons. Krishnan said that the competitive nature of fencing hasn’t impacted the club’s dynamic, however.
“Everybody here wants everybody to succeed, I’ve never seen so many people so proud of you,” Krishnan said.
Currently Krishnan has been out of fencing because of an injury and hopes to recover in time to participate in the tournament.
Students who are interested in getting involved with UTD Fencing can attend their practices on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 7:30 to 10:30 p.m. in the main gym at the Activities Center.