BULLSEYE! Presbyterian College Targets Student Engagement through Archery Club

February 6, 2023

As Presbyterian College aims to become one of the country’s most engaging college campuses, it hopes a reinvigorated archery club hits the target.

Driven entirely by student interest, PC’s Archery Club joins a growing community of enthusiasts on college campuses throughout the country.

PC vice president for enrollment Woody O’Cain said the club demonstrates the college’s commitment to attracting students by offering them an even wider variety of extracurricular activities.

The club earned a grant from USA Archery submitted by archery faculty sponsor and professor of economics Dr. Jerry Slice.

Slice picked up a bow as an undergraduate at Clemson University nearly 50 years ago. He remains an avid archer and is certified by USA Archery as an instructor, trainer, and judge. He is also a member of the National Field Archery Association.

Uniting love for the sport and his students, Slice said he looks forward to working with archers of every skill level and background – from experienced participants to novices picking up a bow for the first time. Of the initial group of students in the club who have practiced, several are just learning.

“My first goal is always to teach them how to handle the equipment safely,” Slice said. “Then we work on the rules and etiquette and practicing on having really, really good form. From there, the students can grow. My role is to get them started and then to help them improve.”

Slice emphasized that PC’s archery club remains open to all students and welcomes participation from faculty and staff.

“It’s a great way to make friends and enjoy the camaraderie of the sport,” Slice said. “It’s competitive but, really, the only person you’re competing against is yourself. You can grow your skills and just enjoy getting out and having a good day at it. Archery takes practice and dedication but there are a lot of rewards in learning how to do it and progressing.”

Presbyterian College will welcome more than a hundred young archers to campus for the 2023 Scholastic 3D Archery Indoor State Championship Tournament this coming weekend, Feb. 10-11, in Springs Gymnasium.

PC vice president for enrollment Woody O’Cain said the tournament and the college’s archery club are great new avenues to attract new students to campus.

“The addition of archery will allow current and prospective Blue Hose to continue their passion for the sport while also adding yet another benefit to prospective students who are considering PC,” O’Cain said. ““We will also award each divisional winner in this weekend’s competition a $15,000 per year scholarship, $60,000 over four years, for those students who apply and are accepted to PC. Within the state of South Carolina alone, there are 232 schools across 31 different counties that have archery teams. I am excited to have another program to offer our students, both current and prospective.

“For those students who participate in archery at PC, this experience gives them yet another affinity group to belong to, while providing a venue for healthy competition with themselves and others. Research has also shown that students who are involved in this sport benefit in many other ways, including self-confidence, motivation, discipline, patience, focus, and improved teacher and student relationships. Students at PC are so talented and have a wide variety of interests, which supplements their experience in the classroom.”