Students help put on PALA Qualifiers at Lake Myrtle Sports Park

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Jillian Kurtz

Florida Southern students and athletes helped at the 2019 Pan American Lacrosse Association Women’s Lacrosse World Qualifiers that took place Nov. 14-17.

Founded in the Fall of 2018, Pan American Lacrosse Association (PALA) is the umbrella organization that facilitates member nations and World Lacrosse in different objectives such as the development of lacrosse in the region and encouraging the development of sports camaraderie among PALA nations and other federations, according to their website. PALA is the third Continental Federation to be formed under the auspices of the Federation of International Lacrosse. 

Assistant Professor of Communications Katherine Loh is on the board of PALA and serves as the Secretary General.

The Women’s Qualifiers were held at the  Lake Myrtle Sports Park in Auburndale, Fla. The countries that attended included Haudenosaunee Nation, Argentina, Mexico, Jamaica, Puerto Rico and Colombia, according to the PALA Newsletter 2 from August 2019.

The Florida Southern lacrosse teams assisted at the events over the four-day tournament, while five FSC students completed an internship with PALA. Brittany Imaly, one of the interns, was given the opportunity to design a tshirt for the qualifiers. Originally, all of the players were going to have to purchase the shirts themselves, but when one of the PALA board members saw the shirt design, he bought the shurt for all of the players to have, according to Imaly. 

“Designing the tshirt was a bit of a challenge,” Imaly said. “I have never done graphic design, so being able to design that tshirt and the fact that everyoneliked the design was amazing.”

The interns had a lot of pre-tournament preparation to do in order for the event to run smoothly. One of the tasks that intern Alex Gobel was assigned to do was create all of the certificates for the players. 

“When you spend so much time preparing for one singular event, when it’s over, you have so much free time I didn’t know what to do with myself,” Imaly said. “Working the event itself was so much fuun and even all the work leading up to it was really enjoyable.”

Student and student-athlete workers were able to build connections with members of the professional sports world  while at the event as well. 

“Those connections are something that I think can truly help me in my professional career in the sporting industry,” Imaly said. 

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