Sports Legacy Fund High-Performance Training Centre opens at TRU

After 18 months of renovations, the new training centre is finally open for business

This past Wednesday marked the grand opening of the newly renovated Sports Legacy Fund High-Performance Training Centre at TRU, showcasing the much-needed changes to a building that has stood on the campus grounds for over 50 years.

The event started with Elder Colleen Erickson, representative of the Secwépemc Nation, sharing some words of wisdom. “Hope that all of the athletes will succeed. Good luck to the soccer, volleyball, and basketball players,” Colleen said.

“When you look around the gym, and you see the banners [flying] from divisions that were conquered, championships that have won. It’s five decades of glory and athletic excellence that’s represented here,” Said Matt Milovick, Vice-President of Administration & Finance, during the event.

“It reminds me of the importance of competitive sport and what it takes to be competitive. It also reminds me of the significance of this building. This was a sad little building 18 months ago. It was a building that had lost its identity, had lost its purpose.”

Milovick mentioned that having a dedicated space for the athletes to practice will improve performance.

“​​I’ll tell you what I always tell you every week. Just win, baby!” 

“It’s a wonderful statement for our community, for the university, but for the community as a whole,” said Bob Smiley, Executive Director of the Kamloops Sports Legacy Fund.

The renovations were made possible thanks to a generous $500,000 donation the Wolfpack was gifted last semester from the Kamloops Sports Legacy Fund. Of the total amount,  $375,000 went towards renovating TRU’s Gymnasium, with the remaining $125,000 going toward athletic scholarships.

Aaron Chew, Head Coach of Strength and Conditioning, shed a tear at the meeting mentioning that this is an important day for him.

“Thank you to everybody who placed their trust in me. This is a dream come true to me. Really. It turned out better than I imagined. I hope this place becomes a home for the athletes. I just wanted to be in a safe space. We’ll get to being stronger faster. We want good people; we want leaders.”

Hadley Schmidt, a third-year setter on the Women’s Volleyball team, talked about what the gym upgrade meant for the team.

“I stand here to say gratitude and excitement as we express our deepest thanks to the university. The significance of this moment cannot be overstated,” Schmidt said.

Chad Jacobson – the new Men’s Basketball Head Coach – expressed his excitement about utilizing the Old Gym.

“Having a facility like this is a huge boost for our team’s development with strength and conditioning, with the space our athletes can access. Having a full-time strength and conditioning coach working with them is a huge benefit to our overall development.”