Springfield College to Receive ‘Award of Merit’ Jostens/NADIIIAA’s Top Community Service HonorJanuary 11, 2008
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Jan. 11, 2008 – Springfield College has been selected to receive the highly-coveted Jostens/NADIIIAA Community Service Top “Award of Merit” for projects completed during the 2006-07 academic year. The college will be presented the Jostens/NADIIIAA highest Award of Merit in the “Array of Projects/Activities” category on January 14, 2008 at the NCAA Convention in Nashville.
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 10 colleges and universities will receive Awards of Merit from Jostens/NADIIIAA in three separate categories. Another eight schools will receive honorable mention status in the same three categories. Springfield College will be one of three schools nationally to receive the most sought-after of the awards. Besides the Array of Projects/Activities category, other award categories include the One-Time Project/Activity and the On-Going Project/Activity.
As an overall category winner, Springfield College will receive a commemorative trophy and a check for $1000 directed to the institution’s general scholarship fund.
In 2006-07, Springfield College participated in over 40 different projects. On September 21, 2006, 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 Springfield College Director of Athletics Cathie A. Schweitzer. “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.
“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.
Kelly Hart, an associate director of athletics, who spearheads Springfield College’s community service projects, said, “I can’t tell you how proud I am of our student-athletes and coaches. Both serve as role models. The student-athletes continually initiate projects, and our coaches continually get behind their efforts. They all really want to make a difference. My hat’s off to them.”