The "Margin of Excellence" and what it means to USAFA Gymnastics
The mission of the United States Air Force Academy is: “to educate, train, and inspire men and women to become officers of character, motivated to lead the United States Air Force in service to our nation.” This mission has a foundation called “The Essence of USAFA” and is built upon eight pillars:
• Developing character and leadership
• Focusing on the Air Force mission in air, space and cyberspace
• Immersing cadets in a total experience
• Harmonizing science, technology, engineering and mathematics and the liberal arts
• Internalizing the Air Force ethos
• Exposing cadets to professional Air Force culture
• Building upon the foundation of an exemplary installation
The Air Force Academy also strives to attain mission objectives through a greater “Margin of Excellence” ideal. Unfortunately, with budget cuts commonplace throughout our government, the USAFA Gymnastics Program has endured significant funding shortfalls. While the “Essence of the Academy” foundation remains solid overall, the “Margin of Excellence” gap for the USAFA Gymnastics Teams has grown in recent years. In short, what the gymnasts have today for baseline funding falls short of the actual requirement or need.
Together, we can eliminate that “Margin of Excellence” funding gap. Through individual and corporate donations to the USAFA Men’s and Women’s Gymnastics Funds, the gymnasts can realize their full potential as future Air Force officers. Monetary contributions will . . .
- Allow our gymnasts to compete in more dual meets both at home and away
-- Our Men’s and Women’s teams have been averaging only 9 dual meets per season while the NCAA permits 13 meets per season
- Ensure our Men’s and Women’s gymnastics teams have a full complement of coaches
-- Current budgets fund 2 coaches per team while the need remains 3 coaches per team
- Allow our gymnasts to participate in events that enhance character and leadership development
-- West Point’s gymnasts participate in annual visits to Gettysburg and other historic battlefields; our campaign could fund similar opportunities for the USAFA gymnasts
- Enable a “future needs” funding capability for the Gymnastics Program
-- If equipment needs replacing, supplies run short, or other unanticipated situations arise, the funding requirement could be quickly satisfied
In today’s fiscal environment, the simple reality is that the “The Essence of USAFA” budgetary needs will receive government funding while the “Margin of Excellence” shortfall will not. Through this Campaign and the USAFA Men’s and Women’s Gymnastics Funds, the “Margin of Excellence” funding gap can be bridged.
Baseline funding or a full opportunity to attain excellence? Developing leaders of character at the “Essence of USAFA ” level or at the “Margin of Excellence” level? Please raise your hand and commit to support our USAFA gymnasts’ professional and athletic development with a donation to the Gymnastics Funds Campaign. With your help we can further enable our cadet gymnasts to realize their true leadership and athletic potential.