Student-Athlete of the Month Presented by Rothman Institute
Congratulations to all of our 2017-2018 Student-Athletes of the Month!
Fall 2017 Academic Success
Congratulations to all of our student-athletes for a successful fall 2017 semester!
Athletic Release: http://www.villanova.com/genrel/012618aaa.html
Record Levels of Academic Achievement Highlight Fall Semester
Wildcats student-athletes continue to reach and surpass high standards for success in the classroom
Jan. 26, 2018
VILLANOVA, Pa. - The academic achievements of Villanova student-athletes continue to surpass even their own lofty goals for elite performance in the classroom, with a report from the Fall 2017 semester highlighting record levels of success among nearly 600 student-athletes. If there is a central theme to the Wildcats level of academic achievement, it is the across-the-board success continually demonstrated by the 24 varsity sports programs.
The overall grade-point average of Villanova student-athletes was 3.278 for the fall semester, marking 29 consecutive marking periods above a 3.0 and six straight semesters with a GPA of 3.2 or higher. There were 22 teams who had a semester GPA of at least 3.0, led by the women’s cross country team whose GPA of 3.663 is the highest ever for a Wildcats team in a semester. The overall mark of 3.278 represents the accomplishments of 599 student-athletes from the fall term.
“I am continuously amazed at the consistent success of our student-athletes across our entire profile of sports,” Director of Athletics Mark Jackson said. “This level of achievement does not happen through arm-twisting or because they are forced to do it. Our student-athletes are successful academically because they understand the important role that academics plays in our culture at Villanova, as well as the value of the Villanova degree. Their accomplishments are reflective of the hard work [Director of Academic Support for Athletics] Jenn Brophy and her entire staff puts in, and can also be attributed to the caliber of head coaches we have here and to the type of people we recruit to our campus. I could not be more pleased with the incredible achievements of our student-athletes which continue semester after semester.”
More than 75 percent of student-athletes, 449 in all, achieved a GPA higher than a 3.0 last fall. In addition, there were 373 student-athletes named to the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll for having a semester GPA of at least 3.2. Leading the way among the group were 22 student-athletes representing 10 different teams who had a perfect 4.0 GPA for the semester. Eight of the 10 sports with at least one 4.0 student-athlete were in their season of competition for at least a part of the fall semester.
Seven student-athletes from the rowing program and six from the women’s cross country and track & field teams highlighted the list of 4.0 student-athletes. The rowing team was represented by Katie Donahue, Maya Grimm, Kathryn Lamb, Briggs Mroz, Kayla Rubin, Cecilia Spesia and Samantha Washburn. Earning a 4.0 GPA from the women’s cross country and track & field teams were Samantha Bragen, Bella Burda, Ava Coleman, Katie Fisher, Erin Jaskot and Adrianna Letros.
The men’s lacrosse team and the women’s swimming & diving team also had multiple athletes achieve a 4.0 GPA. They were Devin McNamara and Matt Webster from men’s lacrosse, along with Caitlin Daday and Micaela Grassi from women’s swimming & diving. The other 4.0 student-athletes were Matt Kennedy (men’s basketball), Konrad Bayer (men’s track & field), Emma Decker (volleyball), Kristin Barbour (women’s soccer) and Dominique Clark (water polo).
In addition to their record-setting team GPA for the semester, the women’s cross country team won their record 15th BIG EAST team title and qualified for the NCAA Championships. In addition to achieving a 4.0 GPA for the fourth time in her five collegiate semesters, Burda was also the individual champion of the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional and was selected as the Mid-Atlantic Athlete of the Year by the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA). She and Fisher were each recognized as both All-BIG EAST and Mid-Atlantic All-Region performers.
The volleyball team also had its entire season of competition occur during the fall marking period. Villanova won 18 games, including three of its last four regular season matches, and qualified for the BIG EAST Championship after knocking off 12th-ranked and eventual conference champion Creighton.
Villanova remains in the upper echelon of schools nationwide for its combination of success at an elite level both academically and in athletic competition. An August 2017 article in Forbes Magazine named Villanova one of “25 Top Colleges That Dominate Academically and Athletically.”