As the son of a commercial fisherman and a waitress from Plymouth, Massachusetts, showing up at Brown wasn’t a dream come true; it was more me entering an alternate reality. I never dreamed of Brown or the Ivy League because I had never heard of either.

Due to low barriers of entry and low cost to participate, high school track & field and cross-country teams generally have huge rosters, incredibly diverse teams, and often attract athletes from lower income families. Brown’s decision denies the most gifted among these athletes the opportunity to reach for excellence in sport and life.

And somehow, the elimination of men’s varsity track and field and cross country programs—while the women’s program is preserved—is accomplished within an initiative with a stated goal of “providing for gender equity.” These are well established, extremely long-standing international sports for both men and women. Any claim of equity when one gender has the sport and another does not is something akin to 1984 doublespeak.

Running was my ticket into Brown, and into a new life. I am just shattered that no other young man will be able to follow this same path.