Athletes Acquire Followers

Social media push to increase community support and attendance at athletic events

In the modern world with game scores, synopses, even play-by-play updates constantly vibrating in their pockets, busy Hockadaisies are supporting their friends’ athletic endeavors with their physical presence less and less.

Indeed, as daisies’ grow more wired, it seems that minutiae like Hockaday sports teams are getting lost and forgotten. However, the Athletic Department has noticed and made its new-school-year’s resolution to reach out to members of the Hockaday community through social media.

Assistant to the Director of Athletics Teressa Thomas is spearheading the effort. She is planning to use many of the same social media venues daisies and their parents frequent to encourage them to attend Hockaday sports games.

“The big push for the beginning of this school year was ‘Let’s push everyone towards the website,’” Thomas said. “Then, we also wanted to do something that was fun, so Twitter!”

The Athletics Department has set new goals for its website (find it through, including posting updates on the homepage and allowing parents to sign up for notifications to their mobile devices. In addition, the department plans to link its new Twitter account (@hockadaisies) to the website.

Thomas hopes to tweet updates throughout the day – “You know, ‘Game today!’ or ‘Volleyball just won!’” – that will allow the Hockaday community to be more involved and in the know about athletics.

“Basically I kind of went around to people at school and then I asked some people on Facebook like why they

don’t come to games,” junior Staci Shelby, the Athletic Board representative  who runs the Twitter account (@daisy_nation)  said. “I even asked St. Mark’s guys and parents and most of them were like ‘we just never know when they are.”

Shelby thinks the outreach to the community has made a difference.

“I go to a lot of games and I see more students there than I did last year so I’m thinking its starting to be effective, but we’ll see,” Shelby said.

The Athletic Board differentiates its Twitter account from the Athletics Department’s in its content.

“The Athletic Board’s Twitter is more student-based,” Thomas said, “and we’re trying to reach more students and parents for the Hockaday athletics ‘hockadaisies’ [Athletics Department’s] Twitter account.”

Upper School history teacher Tracy Walder, who has a Twitter account for her Spycraft: Espionage and Diplomatic Policy course, said that she would follow the Athletic Board or Athletics Department on Twitter to hear about more games.

“I don’t think teachers will follow it on their personal accounts,” Walder said. “But yeah, I think a Twitter account should get more people out to games.”

Other promotional efforts include a section in the weekly DaisyMail (an email newsletter sent to parents, faculty, staff, and board members), several booths at the Centennial Kick-Off Parade and Concert Saturday Sept. 28 and a series of Centennial Games.

“We do too well in athletics,” said Thomas. “It’s too much a part of so many girls here to not be at the forefront of Hockaday.”

-Emily Wechsler