Athletics at Sterling College
At Sterling College, athletics are about connecting students with the world–as an individual, a team, and as part of a supportive community.
Sterling’s athletic programs are a natural complement to the College’s ecologically-focused curriculum and community. Core athletic teams including Trail, Mountain, Ultra Running and Nordic Skiing are foremost extra-curricular means of immersing students in the natural world and empowering Sterling community members to not only see themselves as active participants in the world on the roads, trails, and woods around Craftsbury, but also to engage in supportive competition with peers beyond Craftsbury Common.
The associations and leagues in which Sterling student-athletes participate are inclusive and supportive and offer students exceptional learning, networking, and social growth experiences that are difficult to replicate on campus.
Interest in other sports, such as Trap and Skeet Shooting, and Orienteering, for instance, takes further advantage of Sterling’s location, area resources, and partnerships to offer a wide diversity of opportunities for all Sterling students.
The College’s partnership with the Craftsbury Outdoor Center offers Sterling students high quality facilities, equipment, coaching, and terrain for both Nordic and Running team practice and competition. Students have ample opportunity to interact with Green Racing Project World Cup and Olympic athletes throughout the year.
The Sterling Skyrunners – Trail, Mountain, Ultra Running Team
Sterling is proud to host the first collegiate program in Mountain and Trail Running in the United States, established in October 2013. Students are supported to compete locally and regionally in events throughout the Green Mountains, White Mountains, and around the Northeastern U.S. Sterling students, staff, and faculty train in a supportive community of runners to prepare for competitions from an annual 5k trail series at the nearby internationally recognized Craftsbury Outdoor Center to 50 km, 50 mile, and 100 mile ultramarathons in Vermont and around the world.
Students have recently competed in:
- Sleepy Hollow 10k Mountain Race, VT
- The Race to the Top of Vermont (4.3 miles to the top of Mount Mansfield)
- Ascutney Mountain Run, NH (3.7 miles to the top of Mount Ascutney)
- Jack London 10k, NH
- Wolf Hollow Half Marathon, NH
- The Bighorn 100 Trail Race, WY
- Big Brad Ultra 50k & 50 mile races, ME
- TARC Winter Fells Ultra 32 mile race, MA
Capitalizing on the College’s location in the rural rolling hills nestled among Vermont’s Green Mountains, program participants are within a short drive of a wide variety of terrain and trails, including Mount Mansfield, the Long Trail, Mount Washington and the Presidential Range, and virtually endless miles of singletrack, gravel road, forest, and field.
Institutional memberships include: USA Track and Field Mountain, Ultra, and Trail Division (USATF-MUT); American Trail Running Association (ATRA).
Since its launch in December 2013, the Sterling Nordic Team has been developed in close collaboration with the Craftsbury Outdoor Center, whose world-class facilities, Olympic training center, and 100 km of groomed trails offer an unmatched opportunity for students and athletes interested in Nordic skiing. The team will work with Outdoor Center coaching staff as well as Sterling College faculty to build fitness and skiing skills throughout the season. Students compete in Division 3 USCSA competitions around Vermont and New York as well as local and regional citizens’ races.
The combination of a long natural snow season, the Outdoor Center’s snowmaking, capabilities, trails that cross the Sterling campus, and an impressive concentration of skiing and coaching talent make Sterling College in Craftsbury Common, Vermont an ideal location for student athletes.
We also have 4 renowned ski areas within 45 minutes of campus, including Kingdom Trails, Sugarbush, and Jay Peak.
Athletic Program Staff and Coaches
- Pavel Cenkl, Director Athletics and Trail Mountain Ultra Running Team Coach
- Anna Schulz, Nordic Ski Team Coach
- Lucy Hankinson, Nordic Ski Team Assistant Coach
- Rick Thomas, Trap and Skeet Shooting Team Faculty Advisor