When the school year starts to wind down and seasons all come to a close, the Pacific’s SAAC (Student-Athlete Advisory Committee) organizes their annual SAAC banquet to celebrate all the Pacific Sports teams’ accomplished seasons. 

The end-of-year SAAC banquet, widely known amongst student-athletes, is back in person this year after being consecutively canceled the last two years due to COVID-19. The event usually includes awards, food, music, pictures, and dancing. 

Jessica Eligio, SAAC Communications manager and member of Pacific’s Women’s Tennis team, stated the variety of tasks and responsibilities as executive board members when organizing this in-person event.

“Honestly, there was a lot more that needed to be done than I expected there to be,” Eligio said. “We had to meet up with the rest of the Executive Board to discuss what type of awards, the food, and the overall itinerary we wanted for the banquet. We also had to relay our ideas to the SAAC reps and discuss with them what they all wanted. It was a lot.”

Haylie Uetake, SAAC President and member of the Pacific Women’s Softball team, was a crucial leader in the planning process of the banquet. 

“We all were somewhat lost because this is the first year since freshman year having an in-person SAAC Banquet,” Uetake said. “But we took it as a year to kind of look over what’s been done in the past and make it our own. It was a cool process to have a clean slate and really come together to make things happen.”

Jordan Hara, SAAC Vice President and member of Pacific’s Men’s Baseball team, explained how the life of a student-athlete is not easy. 

“I think this event is a great way to celebrate the end of the year for many student-athletes,” Hara stated. “We sacrifice so much of our free time to our sports and this is a great way to have closure on the year.”

The SAAC Banquet will be held on Wednesday, May 11th, at 6 pm in the Stoller gym with a “red carpet” theme. Student-athletes will have the chance to turn in the uniform for more formal attire and celebrate with all the Boxers athletes. — Todd Takeuchi

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Todd Takeuchi is a senior from Torrance, CA. He is majoring in Journalism, with a minor in Film/Video Production, and also plays for the baseball team at Pacific University. He hopes to make a career in the sports media industry after college. 

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