Isabel Pheifer — Staff writer
The Dordt University Athletic Department recently entered into the world of mobile applications, curating and launching their own app in late November 2022. Fully functional, the app features many amenities able to be customized to each user’s own liking.
The app was created for Defender fans to stay actively connected with the athletic program while on the go. It is powered by SIDEARM Sports and features real-time news alerts, schedules, videos, gameday details, and multimedia content.
Director of Athletic Communications Mike Byker said the idea of an app for athletics has been in his mind for at least five years. Before this year, it didn’t feel like the timing was right for a few factors, one being that “the athletic communications office didn’t have the manpower to do it well.”
But as discussions for an update to the Dordt athletics website unfolded a year and a half ago, it acted like a bridge for the creation of an app. As the athletic communications department grew in numbers and work ethic, it seemed to be the right time for the project to begin. The timeline for the app’s launch was around a six month process. The final six weeks were packed full of backfilling information from the last five years of athletic events over the course of the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year.
“It’s a great avenue to get our information in front of a broad audience and users have the ability to personally tailor the notices they receive,” Byker said.
The app’s icon stands out, featuring the Defender logo centered and placed over top of the typical Defender gold accent color. As the app opens, the user is brought to the athletic homepage, featuring the daily Defender athletic events. As the user scrolls down, press releases of completed events and previews for future events are displayed and available to be read. On the bottom of the screen, the user can find a schedule of upcoming events, as well as videos and highlights of past events.
One of the most encompassing parts of the app’s experience comes from the “You” section. By clicking on this section, the user can customize their experience any way they like. The user is able to choose certain Dordt teams to follow and select which notifications to receive for each team.
“Those who want cross country news but don’t have an interest in football can have that. Those who want all the information can have that, too,” Byker said.
Designed with a user-friendly interface, the app weaves in godordt.com content and brings the latest news to your mobile device. It also provides a quick and surefire way to access live video and audio streams of games, in-game stats, and social media updates.
The app is available for download on the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store by searching “Dordt Defenders” on your smartphone or tablet.
“The launch of godordt.com and the Dordt Defender app provides followers channels to access timely, consistent, and accurate Dordt University athletics information,” Byker said.