Sun Devil Athletics teams with Phoenix FC on stadium agreement


December 11, 2012

Phoenix FC to play inaugural season at Sun Devil Soccer Stadium

Arizona State University announced early this morning that Phoenix FC, a franchise member of the USL PRO professional soccer league, has signed on for a stadium agreement for the 2013 inaugural season. The team will play home games at Sun Devil Soccer Stadium in Tempe beginning this spring. Download Full Image

As part of the deal, Phoenix FC will invest to significantly expand seating capacity by more than 4,000 additional seats, taking the total capacity to more than 5,000 seats. Designs include the addition of North, South and East seating areas, with the South side reserved for a “Supporters Section” dedicated to the most avid fans. Phoenix FC has already purchased the additional seating with construction slated to begin next month, and it will be completed before the team begins professional play in April.

“We are excited to partner with the City of Tempe to host professional soccer at Arizona State University,” said Steve Patterson, vice president of university athletics. “We will provide a first-class soccer stadium for Phoenix FC to play its home matches. Our women’s soccer program has been in the NCAA Tournament three of the past four seasons and as soccer grows in the state, a partnership with Phoenix FC is a natural way to maintain that momentum.”

With this location, near the northeast corner of University Drive and Rural Road, Phoenix FC looks to make an immediate impact and draw sell-out crowds of soccer enthusiasts across Arizona. The team will play 15 home games between April and September of 2013, joining the USL PRO’s Los Angeles Blues as the two premiere western franchises. Additionally, the club will play exhibition matches against MLS clubs and International teams, and compete in the 100th edition of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup in May of 2013.

For more information about Phoenix FC visit PhoenixFC.com.

Britt Lewis

Interim Communications Director, ASU Library

Alum uses anthropology, cultural background to improve opportunities for Native Americans


December 11, 2012

Richard Meyers, tribal relations director at South Dakota State University, recognizes and empathizes with the extreme poverty in his own backyard. Meyers, an enrolled Oglala Sioux (Lakota) tribal member with Irish ancestry, holds a beneficial perspective that is both outside and within the Native culture.

With master’s and doctoral degrees in anthropology from ASU’s School of Human Evolution and Social Change in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, he seems qualified to profoundly understand the situation of American Indians, as well as how to potentially improve it. Richard Meyers Download Full Image

Meyers points out that several of the poorest communities in the nation are in South Dakota and are connected to Lakotas. It concerns him that American Indians on the whole are “lowest in terms of representation in higher education completion and highest in drop-outs.” As a result, few go on to careers in fields that can affect policies that impact their peoples.

With this knowledge in tow, Meyers felt indebted to his family to pursue a discipline that may help reconcile Native American ideals with government interests. Fittingly, the Lakota term for his position is iyeska, which roughly translates to “interpreter.”

In the past, Meyers was a ghostwriter in Indian Affairs at the U.S. Department of the Interior, known more commonly as the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Washington, D.C. In that position, his goal was to not only edit the hundreds of government press releases on American Indian tribes, but also to communicate to the world the policies being contested.

One cause Meyers is championing is the increased representation of American Indians in D.C.

“As the U.S. dealt with tribal groups in its history of land grabbing, the tribal leaders who came to D.C. were often guided or manipulated or influenced by ‘lobbyists’ who saw their travel to D.C. as an opportunity for money,” he says.

With the current drop-out rate and underrepresentation in post-secondary education, there are relatively few native lawyers and lobbyists appealing for their tribes' rights, but Meyers believes that tide is turning.

“I think that through institutions of higher education, there will be new input into a lot of the politics that shape and influence ‘Indian Country,’” he says.

At some point in the near future, Meyers hopes to institute an American Indian Studies major at South Dakota State University to further propagate awareness and engagement. However, his true passion remains the study of anthropology, which he set his heart and mind on long ago.

After an undergraduate career at Amherst College, Meyers felt that ASU was just the environment he needed to equip him for his future in the field by melding his intimate liberal arts college experience with the opportunities of a large, top-tier university.

“Anthropology was the only discipline that allowed terms and writing to explain with clarity ‘cultural’ realities in a discourse that made sense to me,” he says. “I am an anthropologist first and foremost with a subject-matter expertise in Native North America more so than Native studies/American Indian studies. That means that from the human condition of tribal peoples across the globe to an economic analysis of late capitalism, I enjoy anthropology and its lens of viewing human beings.”

“It is interesting to invert the initial paradigm of anthropology and its associations to iconic Whitemen in khakis,” Meyers says.

Isaac Gilbert, iagilber@asu.edu
School of Human Evolution and Social Change

Rebecca Howe

Communications Specialist, School of Human Evolution and Social Change

480-727-6577