Boxing It Out With Catalano

Hossein Sadeghian, Writer

Joe Catalano is a junior, a secondary education major with a focus in history, and the leader of the NEIU boxing club. He was kind enough to give me his time and tell me more about what they do every week.

He has been boxing for more than 2 years and says he came to boxing by watching “Rocky” movies at a young age. Joe became a leader of the boxing club in fall 2016. It started out only three members but each semester more and more have joined.

I asked him about the challenges they face in order to keep the club going.

“Everything is sufficient enough. The people who were here before did a pretty good job. We have boxing gear and there is no need for people to bring gloves.

In the past years members had to buy their own stuff but most of the things needed are already here. However, it is highly recommended to bring your own jump ropes and hand wraps,” Catalano said.

The last time a competition event was held at NEIU was in 2013.Catalano is trying to hold a sanctioned event where members of the U.S.A. Boxing compete with each other in sanctioned events. There would be medics available in that competition and boxers have to have insurance coverage.

Students interested in joining U.S.A. Boxing have to sign up at the A physical is required from a doctor and sent to the USA boxing central office. They will send a white passbook which has the boxer records such as height and age once the application is received and accepted.      

Normally seven to eight people practice every week but on busy days it has gone up to 12 people.

Juaquin Mendoza, one of the new members, was interested in boxing because of physical well-being and protection. Another new club member, Michael Burdett said the instructor is great and knows how to deal with boxers at different levels.

Oscar Encarnacion, a senior accounting major, joined the club to learn self-defense. He liked boxing since high school but never tried it. He remembers on his first day Joe shook his hand and introduced him to the club members. He has never left.

Catalano encourages everyone to join. It’s a sport where students can get fit, build confidence and have fun at the same time.

For interested students Boxing Club meets every Tuesday and Thursday from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and you can join regardless of your age, gender or experience. If you would like to know more about the boxing club you can always contact campus recreation at (773) 442-4135 or email Joe Catalano at [email protected].