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Student-athletes succeed on and off the court

NKU+women%E2%80%99s+volleyball+team+has+earned+their+third+consecutive+team+academic+award+this+year+from+the+American+Coaches+Association.+The+award+recognizes+teams+that+perform+exceptionally+in+the+classroom+throughout+the+school+year+and+maintain+a+3.0+cumulative+team+grade-point+average.+
NKU women’s volleyball team has earned their third consecutive team academic award this year from the American Coaches Association. The award recognizes teams that perform exceptionally in the classroom throughout the school year and maintain a 3.0 cumulative team grade-point average.

NKU women’s volleyball team has earned their third consecutive team academic award this year from the American Coaches Association. The award recognizes teams that perform exceptionally in the classroom throughout the school year and maintain a 3.0 cumulative team grade-point average.

Kody Kahle

Kody Kahle

NKU women’s volleyball team has earned their third consecutive team academic award this year from the American Coaches Association. The award recognizes teams that perform exceptionally in the classroom throughout the school year and maintain a 3.0 cumulative team grade-point average.

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Over the last three years, NKU athletics has shown that they instill this in their student-athletes, receiving 148 Atlantic Sun All-Academic awards in the last year alone, according to President Geoffrey Mearns convocation speech.

According to Athletic Director Ken Bothof the department is always willing to help students succeed academically.

“We tell our athlete’s that if they’re struggling in a class, we will provide support from them.,” Bothof said. “It’s important from a university standpoint, and from an athletic standpoint, that student’s perform well academically.”

Most notably the women’s basketball team and the women’s volleyball have received academic honors. Read about them below.                

 

 Graphics by Kevin Schultz

 

Women’s volleyball

NKU’s women’s volleyball team has earned their third consecutive team academic award this year from the American Coaches Association.

The award recognizes teams that perform exceptionally in the classroom throughout the school year and maintain a 3.0 cumulative team grade-point average.

Head Volleyball Coach, Elizabeth Hart discussed that the girls spend about 20 hours a week playing volleyball, not including travel time. So when do they make time for school?

Sophomore setter Taylor Snyder expressed that time management is very important and that the coaches make sure that the girls have time for their school work as well as volleyball.

“We study on the bus, in the airport, before games, and in the locker room,”  Jenna Ruble, a senior middle hitter, said. “As a freshmen, you grow up on the team knowing that grades are very important.”

The academic award is very important to the team. What makes this team unique is that everyone is on board. They put it in their minds to do well in school, and they get it done as a team.

“Right away freshmen have five hours a week of study tables,” Hart said. “If any of the older players have below a 3.0, they will also have five hours a week of study tables for the next semester.”

On average the girls take about 15-16 credit hours a semester, which is 5 to 6 classes depending on how many credit hours your classes are. That’s 5 to 6 classes on top of 20 plus hours of volleyball a week.

“The girls are self-motivated,” Hart proudly said. “They like to win awards. It makes them feel good.”

The volleyball team not only works together on the court, they collaborate in the classroom as well. They help each other out and make sure that every single player is performing as well as they can in their classrooms.

“The girls know that after volleyball their grades and degree is what they will have to go off of,” Hart said.

Ruble and Snyder share advice for students that struggle to find time for their school work.

“Go study with someone,” Snyder said. “It’s easier to study with someone than by yourself. They push you just like going to the gym to work out with someone.”

They added that keeping a planner is useful.

“Use a planner and use resources: teachers, free tutoring, and good communication” Ruble suggested.

The University continues to up their standards when it comes to athletes and academics, which makes it harder to not do well in school and still play a college sport.   

 

 

Women’s basketball

Every student athlete comes to school to be a student first and an athlete second, but the NKU women’s basketball has taking academics to an all-time high.

The team was awarded a spot in the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association’s academic Top 25 Honor Roll. The team has the 15th best grade point average out of all NCAA division I schools.

“I was very excited and proud of our team,” says NKU women’s Head Coach Dawn Plitzuweit. “Our number one expectation is to be the best. It’s good to see the young ladies efforts rewarded with this awesome recognition.”

They also have tutors to help the student athletes when they need help as well as learning specialists.

Many of the women’s basketball games are on the road, which can make it hard to stay on their studies, but when they have the 15th best grade point average in the nation, they must be doing something right.

“We have to make sure we stay on top of our studies even while we’re on the road,” says senior center Kaitlyn Gerrety.

Even after long games, homework still has to be done.

“I try not to do homework after a game, but sometimes you have to do what you have to do,” explains junior guard Christine Roush. “We have to always remember we are students before we are athletes.”

The team also has to participate in study tables to ensure that they are completing their school work, which can also serve as an example for younger players.

“If I’m in study tables studying, doing homework, or on the computer, younger players will see that and that will hopefully make them want to study themselves,” explains Gerrety.

Though they had the 15th best grade point average in the nation last year, they still strive for more.

“We’re already talking about how we want to make the top 10 this year,” Roush said.  

 

Graphics by Kevin Schultz
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Student-athletes succeed on and off the court