This prestigious awards program is co-sponsored by the National Association of Division III Athletic Administrators and by Jostens, and is intended to recognize the many contributions that Division III student-athletes make to their communities. The purpose is to make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate.
A total of nine colleges and universities will receive Awards of Merit from Jostens/NADIIIAA in three separate categories. Another six schools will receive honorable mention status in the same three categories. Besides the Array of Projects/Activities category, other award categories include the One-Time Project/Activity and the On-Going Project/Activity.
In 2007-08, Springfield College participated in over 40 different projects. On September 20, 2007, over 700 student-athletes from 26 varsity teams were involved in the College’s annual Humanics in Action Day. Projects during that day included: cleaning up local elementary and middle schools, raking and mowing lawns, general clean-up, painting decks, and reading to fourth graders. All geared to improve the local community, those projects lasted approximately four hours.
Some of the other student-athlete-driven projects throughout the year included tutoring local high school students; setting up benefits for the United Way, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, the Open Pantry Homeless Shelter and Teen Living Program in Springfield and the Adopt-A-Family Program; and visiting Shriners Hospital in Springfield.
“We are very honored and appreciative of receiving such an outstanding award,” said Dr. Cathie A. Schweitzer, Springfield College’s Director of Athletics. “It will be very humbling to receive it on behalf of our students. The mission of Springfield College is to ‘educate students in spirit, mind, and body for leadership in service to humanity by building upon a foundation of humanics and academic excellence.’ Community service is a large part of this mission. It helps to prepare our students for a life of helping others.”
Springfield College has received Awards of Merit from this program in the past. It earned an Award of Merit in the Ongoing Project/Activity category in 2003-04, and an Award of Merit in the One-Time Project/Activity category in 2004-05. In 2006-07, Springfield received an Award of Merit in the Array of Project Activities category.
“I have been most proud of how often and to what extent our student-athletes participate in community service on a regular basis,” said Schweitzer. “Our intercollegiate teams remain integral parts of service to our local communities. As for this award, it will send a loud message for generations of Springfield College student-athletes to come about how there is personal satisfaction and educational value inherent in community service.”
The NADIIIAA is an association comprised of athletics administrators from the 437 institutions and 40 conferences competing at the NCAA Division III level. Minneapolis-based Jostens is a leading provider of products, programs, and services that help people celebrate important moments, recognize achievements, and build affiliations.