Yale Outdoor Education Center Pond Named for Club Sports Founder Edward C. Migdalski
A generous contribution from William C. Bullock, Jr. ’58 has named the Edward C. Migdalski Pond at the Yale Outdoor Education Center (OEC). The gift, in memory of the founder of club sports at Yale and the OEC, creates a permanent endowment to maintain the facilities and grounds of the OEC sporting complex and its related club sports programs.
Alumni and friends have made further contributions in Migdalski’s memory to renovate the Bullock Clubhouse there.
A longtime advocate for athletics and outdoor recreation, Ed Migdalski defined club sports at Yale. When he began his tenure with the Department of Athletics more than fifty years ago, Yale supported what were then called “minor” sports in addition to its varsity program. Recognizing that students were equally devoted at both levels of competition, Migdalski launched a club sports program, stating “there is no such thing as minor sports.” In the years that followed, he advocated for the club sports concept around the country and founded both the Yale Fishing Club and the Yale Skeet & Trap Club.
“I am thrilled to support Ed Migdalski’s legacy at Yale. His enthusiasm for the outdoors was infectious. Not only did I learn so much from him as both a student and athlete, but I also enjoyed the privilege of having him teach my children these same values on our many fishing trips together,” said Bullock, who was captain of the 1958 Yale Fishing Team and whose friendship with Migdalski spanned more than half a century.
Today at Yale, club sports are flourishing. Recently endowed by William C. Ford ’48, the program now supports nearly fifty teams in areas of competition including ice hockey, rugby, table tennis, and Ultimate Frisbee.
Bullock’s gift also recognizes Migdalski for his role in founding the Yale Outdoor Education Center. Located on 1,500 wooded acres in East Lyme, Connecticut, the center provides space for outdoor activities for students, faculty, and staff. Welcoming students from around the University, including the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, the School of Management, and the Freshman Outdoor Orientation Trips (FOOT) program, the center also provides a home for the Yale Fishing Club and the Yale Skeet & Trap Club. The Migdalski Pond is stocked annually with brook and rainbow trout for fly-fishing.
Migdalski worked at Yale for over fifty years. In addition to his responsibilities as the director of club sports, he also maintained a career-long connection to the Peabody Museum, collecting many research and display specimens. Migdalski received the Yale Medal in 2001 in recognition of his commitment to the University and tireless efforts to promote outdoor recreation and athletics.
(March 1, 2010)