2015 Student-Athlete Academic Awards Breakfast
RICHMOND, Ky. – Eastern Kentucky University celebrated its most dedicated student-athletes Wednesday morning at the annual Student-Athlete Academic Awards Breakfast held in the Keen Johnson Ballroom. EKU President Michael T. Benson served as the guest speaker with several University administrators, faculty members and coaches in attendance.
Kate Johnson, Director of the Bratzke Student-Athlete Success Center, congratulated all of the honorees and acknowledged the tremendous academic success experienced by each of the EKU teams. Johnson announced that EKU had posted an all-athlete GPA of 3.12 for the fall 2014 semester, marking the sixth consecutive semester the all-athlete GPA has been above 3.0.
Johnson then recognized 289 Colonel Scholars (3.0 GPA or above), 107 members of the OVC Commissioner's Honor Roll (3.25 GPA or above) and 12 winners of the OVC Medal of Honor (4.0 GPA). The 12 OVC Medal of Honor awardees were: Una Britton (women's cross country / track and field), Ann Eason (women's cross country / track and field), Amandine Faouzi (women's tennis), Ben Fisher (baseball), Hayley Flynn (softball), Nicki Henry (women's golf), JJ Jude (football), Taylor Speaks (football), Ashley Svec (women's cross country / track and field), Alexandra Szarabajko (women's track and field), Whitney Wallace (soccer) and Rachel Welker (women's golf).
Twenty-five student-athletes were also inducted into Chi Alpha Sigma, a national honor society recognizing student-athletes with 60 hours or more, who have a 3.4 or higher cumulative GPA, have earned a varsity letter and are of high moral character. Those student-athletes inducted into Chi Alpha Sigma were: Fisher, Flynn, Svec, Wallace, Welker, Katie Bright (soccer), Alexus Cooper (women's basketball), Anna Gleixner (women's golf), Florian Graskamp (men's tennis), Kenny Hostrander (baseball), Kaitlind Hydorn (women's track and field), Kayla Joyce (softball), Paige Larkin (soccer), Matt Lynch (baseball), Julie Mathisen (women's cross country / track and field), Luka Ndungu (men's cross country / track and field), Mallory Osborne (women's track and field), Katie Pippen (women's basketball), Daridge Saidi (men's tennis), Ben Turner (men's cross country / track and field), Caleb Watkins (football), Erika Wolfer (soccer), Ashley Woolum (women's track and field), Luke Wurzelbacher (baseball) and Tashuana Yapchung (women's track and field).
During the award ceremony, Director of Athletics Steve Lochmueller announced that senior men's basketball player Deverin Muff was the recipient of the Athletic Director's Leadership Award, bestowed upon a student-athlete who exemplifies achievement in the sport and in the classroom, as well as leadership. This year, Johnson presented head softball coach Jane Worthington with the Coaches' Academic Enhancement Award, which is given to a head coach who exceeds the standards and encourages academic excellence for his or her team. It is the third time in the last five years Worthington has received the award.