Three members of the Hawkettes reflect on their experiences as a part of the team.
By Anina Tardif-Douglin Captain, The Hawkettes
The Hawkettes are a team of 17 girls who are dedicated to dance and love to perform. We are a dance team, not a cheer squad. We welcome all girls with dance experience to try out for the team in the fall.
The Hawkettes perform at all of the boys basketball home games, and the girls basketball home games on Saturdays. We would like to perform at all of the girls home games but during the week they are at 6p.m. and many of us have class then.
We practice three times a week, two days in the movement room and one day in the dance studio, for a total of six hours as a group. Individually each team member is expected to practice the dance on her own during days that we do not have practice.
Most of the girls on the team have a dance background and have been dancing for most of their lives, some of the girls have gymnastics and cheerleading experience, and some girls didn’t dance before they came to college but impressed the captains at tryouts and have become integral parts of the team.
Hawkettes is different from Dance Club because it is a specific style of dance (poms) as opposed to a collection of every type of dance. More than half of the Hawkettes are also in Dance Club. We love to perform, and Hawkettes gives us a chance to do that for an entire season. Come to the basketball games and see us perform at halftime.
The Hawkettes has been an important part of my life for the past few years. I tried out for the team my sophomore year and was made a captain my second semester on the team. Since then I have been choreographing dances and mixing music for the team.
As captain of the team, I find myself extremely busy all the time, constantly making time to choreograph and arrange dances. It’s hard work but when I see the girls at practice working hard, I know that it’s all worth it. When we are out on the floor of the arena performing, it’s the best feeling, and I am so proud of all my girls.
I have helped this team grow throughout the years and my hope is that in the future the Hawkettes will have a real coach and be a competitive dance team.
Every year we get better and better, and I know the girls can do it when Rosa and I are gone. I know that the thing I’ll miss most about college is the Hawkettes.
By Rosa Trembour Captain, The Hawkettes
Looking back over the past three years, I am extremely happy to have been a member of the Hawkettes. Two sophomores invited me to try out when I was a first-year, and joining the team gave me an immediate group of great friends.
We were a very small dance team in 2007 and 2008, but slowly more and more people began to show interest and now we have a very talented group of 17 girls.
I think what brought this group together was a sense of pride in St. Mary’s and a love of dance. Combined, the two make for fun performances and the opportunity to support sports teams on campus. The eight original Hawkettes all really enjoyed each others’ company as well as performing for crazy fans.
We always looked forward to the enthusiasm in the arena when someone would score or when the student section would start another cheer. Students, faculty, staff, and coaches were all supportive of us and helped make it possible for the team to continue and grow. Since I was a first-year the team has nearly doubled.
It is also really wonderful to see how the team has come together. The Hawkettes have a policy of helping each other, whether with the dance routines or with school work and other activities. I think many of the Hawkettes are happy they have their fellow dancers to support them outside of practice and performances.
With time the dances have become more complicated and we now have a more comprehensive repertoire. Some years the fans would ask us why we only performed two routines or why they were only three minutes in length.
This year we are constantly learning new choreography and extending the length of the routines so the fans have a little more halftime entertainment. As you may have noticed if you were at the last game, we have new uniforms!
This is one step toward making the team a bigger, more formal presence on campus. Ideally we would like to also enter regional dance competitions, cheer on other sports teams, and participate in more campus-wide events.
This being my last year on the team I am very hopeful that all these will happen in the future. The current group of girls is talented, energetic, and motivated to continue and develop the Hawkettes in years to come.
I’m so grateful for being a part of the Hawkettes, and I encourage you to come to the games and cheer with us and for us!