This week’s Friday night practice was very special for a group of SJSU Judo Alumni. These young men and women are the first students to be promoted under the Higher Education & Judo Promotion Program at SJSU. It’s a pilot program created by Coach Uchida that allows students to graduate with a degree in one hand, and a rank of at least san dan in the other hand (based on prior competition and performance). In collaboration with local organizations CenCo and USJF, hopefully this program will continue to help these judoka earn some recognition for their extensive training during their college years. While rank may not matter during competition years, it is important later on when these experienced alumni may want to open a dojo of their own and pass on their judo knowledge. This is a big step in the SJSU Judo program, and hopefully it will continue to benefit future generations of SJSU student-athletes.
From Left to Right: Hector Fajardo (3rd dan), David Torres (3rd dan), Anthony Kwon (3rd dan), Matthew Dong (3rd dan), Allison Clifford (3rd dan), Sidartha Raj (3rd dan). Also promoted but not present Friday night were Brent Yasukochi (3rd dan), Matthew Ogata (3rd dan) and Colton Brown (4th dan).