In an article on Sail1Design.com, Team President Lisa Gabrielson discusses some of the challenges the team has faced in the past and is still facing now.
"While the Northwestern University and University of Chicago teams have had the manpower, coaches and membership numbers to keep developing, the American University sailing team has struggled to develop with the current economic situation, “Club Sailing is not a priority for the AU Athletic department in the least,” said Lisa Gabrielson, current president of the AU team. The team, who does not have their own fleet of boats, relies heavily on the support and generosity of the Georgetown and George Washington sailing teams, “both teams have huge fleets that they will let us practice on most days. Of course, this is not ideal, but we appreciate all the support we get from two other teams that are in our conference. Of course, our goal is to someday soon buy boats and we are launching a huge fundraising campaign this year to really get the ball rolling on that,” she said. Currently, the team is coach-less and does not have a faculty advisor, something that Gabrielson cites as an important way to keep some continuity with the team from year to year. However attempts to secure a faculty advisor have failed, “finding support for a team that has not won any national championships yet is hard.” According to Gabrielson, the dedicated team of 28 sailors in a campus of 6,000 undergraduates is seen as an unknown entity by most of the campus."