New Jersey City University will join the AMCC as an affiliate member in the sport of women's bowling, effective for the 2015-16 season.
NJCU, which has competed as an independent the last two seasons (2013-15) after four years as an associate member of the Division I Northeast Conference (2009-13), will compete against only Division III institutions in the bowling conference.
"Our affiliation with the AMCC will provide NJCU student-athletes with a unique opportunity to compete with similar NCAA Division III schools," noted Alice De Fazio, NJCU Director of Athletics. "We look forward to a very positive collaboration, and anticipate continued success for our women's bowling program."
Second-year head coach Rell Smith added: "In addition to competing against a multitude of proficient teams throughout the nation, joining the AMCC gives our developing athletes the chance to benchmark their burgeoning talent against other schools within our competitive realm—in turn, enhancing the collegiate sporting experience for our bowlers."
NJCU will become the fifth member of the league in women's bowling. Full-time AMCC members that sponsor the sport include Medaille College (Buffalo, N.Y.), Mount Aloysius College (Cresson, Pa.), Penn State University-Altoona and University of Pitt-Bradford. The 2014-15 season was the second season the league sponsored the sport.
NJCU will have the opportunity to work with a familiar face as an affiliate member of the league. Current commissioner Donna Ledwin is a former commissioner of the New Jersey Athletic Conference. NJCU is the only member of the NJAC, the Gothic Knights' primary conference, to sponsor the sport.
NJCU will begin its 16th season in 2015-16. Currently in a redevelopment mode under Smith, NJCU began sponsoring bowling in 2000-01 and once it became an NCAA championship sport in 2003-04, reeled off seven consecutive NCAA National Collegiate Women's Bowling Tournament appearances from 2004-10. NJCU reached four NCAA Final Four fours (2004, 2006, 2008, 2010) and twice finished third in the nation (2004, 2008). NJCU has been ranked as high as No. 2 nationally in its history.
In 2010, NJCU became the first bowling program to host the NCAA championship—the only time it has been held in the Northeast—when it was contested in North Brunswick, N.J.