About the Virginia Scholastic Chess Association
The Virginia Scholastic Chess Association (VSCA) is dedicated to the promotion of the game of chess for all of Virginia’s school children. To that end, the VSCA will support the creation of school teams that will lead to tournament play. Furthermore, the VSCA will make special efforts to reach special needs, at-risk and under-served students. In this way, the game of chess can serve as a bridge between the varied social and geographical segments of the Commonwealth.
The VSCA believes that the game of chess is one of the best ways to teach conceptual thinking, long-range planning, and quiet concentration. For that reason, the VSCA will work to have chess incorporated into the schools as an Educational Enrichment and/or extra curricular program, not just in individual schools, but, ultimately state wide.
The VSCA sees chess as a life-long interest. Knowing that older people have much to share with younger people, the VSCA will sponsor inter-generational play at selected venues.
The VSCA understands that chess is easy to learn, but a complex game to master, and that the mastery of a challenging skill helps to define a successful childhood. To facilitate the study of chess, the VSCA will sponsor simultaneous exhibitions, lectures, chess-a-thons, and summer camps, so that students can work toward attaining mastery.
What We Are & What We Do
The Virginia Scholastic Chess Association, Inc. (VSCA) is a non-profit membership organization. The Articles of Incorporation filed with the State Corporation Commission of Virginia state that, “…any person shall be qualified to become a member upon payment of the annual dues…” and, “The specific purposes for which this corporation is organized are to carry on such activities as are permitted by law and are compatible with the promotion of the game of chess as an educational enrichment medium for children from pre-school age through age nineteen.”
The VSCA provides chess sets and boards to schools and subscriptions to Chess Life and School Mates for school libraries. Because it is well known that learning to play chess enhances the academic skills of concentration, planning and conceptual thinking, the VSCA makes instructional materials and training available to volunteers who serve as VSCA-sponsored chess instructors.
The VSCA organizes and conducts scholastic chess tournaments and recruits and trains people to run chess tournaments. These day-long Saturday events provide an opportunity for children to compete in a non-physical activity in a safe environment. We believe that participation in such tournaments helps develop healthy social skills which promote racial and cultural harmony in our communities as well as teaching good sportsmanship, patience and personal responsibility. VSCA tournaments provide both individual and team competition. Win, lose or draw, no child is eliminated from a tournament and each child can build self esteem by feeling that he or she is part of a team.
By conducting fund raising activities such as Chess-a-thons in shopping malls, USCF-rated chess tournaments open to adults, raffles at tournaments and the sale of T-shirts with the unique VSCA logo, the VSCA is able to underwrite tournament entry fees for disadvantaged students who might otherwise be unable to participate. With financial support from members and friends and organizations such as Farmers Insurance Group, the J.C. Penny Foundation, the Ukrop’s Golden Gift program, the Ford Motor Company and the Schwab Fund For Charitable Giving, the VSCA has been able to send deserving children to state, national and international chess tournaments.
The Virginia Scholastic Chess Association is one of thousands of charitable organizations listed on the internet at Guidestar. There you can find information which is important to donors who wish to make tax deductible donations to the VSCA, either directly or through their employer or through foundations and trust funds. Copies of the Articles of Incorporation can be obtained by contacting the State Corporation Commission, Commonwealth of Virginia, Richmond, VA 23219.
Board of Directors
- Srini Aiyer, Henrico County
- Gopal Bhagavatula, Chesterfield County
- Ram Dasari, Chesterfield County
- Venkat Guruvelli, Henrico County
- Mike Hoffpauir, York County
- Bart Mebane, Middlesex County
- Christine Morales, Hampton
- David Mueller, Chesterfield County
- Christina Schweiss, Virginia Beach
- President: Mike Hoffpauir, York County
- Vice President: Kate Brown, Henrico County
- Secretary: Mike Callaham, Henrico County
- Treasurer: Gopal Bhagavatula, Chesterfield County
- Webmaster: Bart Mebane, Middlesex County
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