Sullivan County Democrat
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Democrat Photo by Ted Waddell

THE SCCC CHEERLEADING squad consists of, from the left: Sharkia Lomax, Jessica Morris, Sophia Fortune, Worine Providence, Crystal Oliver, Sharonnie Spencer, Rose Bayron and Coach Jennifer Smith. Not in photo: Bettina Farg and Neharda Richards.

Cheerleaders a New
Addition to SCCC Games

By Ted Waddell
LOCH SHELDRAKE — December 12, 2000 – At Sullivan County Community College (SCCC), a new squad of athletes took to the floor for the first time in the local community college’s history, as the recently formed Generals’ cheerleading squad made its debut during Saturday afternoon’s victory by the men’s basketball team (see related story).
The squad is coached by Jennifer Smith, a graduate of Tri-Valley Central School. At TVCS, she cheered from modified to varsity.
While attending SUNY Albany for four seasons, Smith participated on the Division I’s cheerleading squad, where she served as captain for two seasons.
During her stay at SUNY Albany, Smith attended three Universal Cheerleaders Association (UCA) camps. She works for the local community college’s elder hostel program, and is a certified NYS coach.
Smith is on a mission to make cheerleading an integral and well-respected part of campus life, and encourage folks in the community to attend college athletic events.
“I think cheerleading is behind the times in Sullivan County,” said Smith. “I’m trying to gain respect for our sport… we are athletes.”
According to Smith, while in years past the community college has had students lead cheers, this is their first official cheerleading squad.
“My ultimate goal is to gain respect for a sport that I love and I want to teach others to love,” she said. “It’s the most challenging sport I’ve ever seen. It’s rough, and it takes a lot of dedication and perseverance. It’s not as easy as it seems.”
The cheerleaders earned $70 at the college’s mid-November craft fair, painting faces for a buck a face. The SCCC Faculty Student Association (FSA) recently authorized the purchase of uniforms for the new cheerleading squad.
Members of the SCCC Generals Cheerleading Squad: Rose Bayron, Bettina Farg, Sophia Fortune, Sharkia Lomax, Jessica Morris, Crystal Oliver, Worine Providence, Neharda Richards and Sharonnie Spencer.
“These girls work very hard, and I’m very proud of them,” said Smith.

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