In order to keep members of the Concord Academy community active and healthy in the wake of COVID-19, Concord Academy has been offering both virtual and on-campus athletic options. Whether it be Varsity Soccer on the Moriarty Athletic Campus or Fitness Center classes on Zoom, these activities provide CA students a welcome respite from the sedentary quality of distance learning. As CA shifts towards bringing students back to campus for academics, some logistical changes have been made to these athletic offerings.
While students had previously filled out a daily COVID-19 symptom check on Boardingware before coming to campus, those now attending in-person sports are required to complete this survey on MyMedBot, a smartphone self-screening app. Athletes are still required to report their location on Boardingware for the purpose of contact tracing, but the new system offers members of the CA community a navigable interface to complete their daily health checks. If a user is symptom-free, MyMedBot displays a bright, green screen that they must present to their coach at the start of every athletic meeting. If a user is symptomatic, however, the app displays a red screen that conveys to the school that they are at risk for the virus.
Another advantage of MyMedBot is that symptom checks may be completed at any time of the day, rather than at least two hours before coming to campus. Many athletes, including cross-country runner Ricky Kundu ’22, appreciate the new system’s flexibility. “I like it more than Boardingware,” he says. “There’s no deadline to fill out the survey, and I feel like it’s a lot easier because there are fewer technical glitches as well.” Unlike Boardingware, the app also generates two push notifications every morning to ensure users remember to complete their daily symptom checks.
Since many day students and boarders will return to campus for STAC 2, more students may choose to participate in on-campus athletics. Due to the shorter days in the mid-fall, however, many team sport and PE practices have been shortened from two hours to 75 minutes. This decision ensures that students attending in-person athletics, particularly those commuting to campus, can return to their homes or boarding houses before sundown.
Regardless of these changes and the ever-transforming nature of hybrid learning, many CA athletes enjoy the on-campus and virtual athletic offerings.
“While a lot of focus is put on in-person participants during the week, these meetings are a good way for [virtual athletes] to check in with their teammates,” Laura Diangeli ’21, a virtual member of the Girls Varsity Field Hockey, shares. This sentiment is echoed by Annie de Oliveira Castro ’22, who participates in both on-campus and virtual volleyball offerings. “[The team] does introductions and bonding activities, and we review plays and learn cheers when we’re online,” she says. “And apart from the emphasis on social distancing, in-person volleyball is just like normal volleyball.”