Friday, July 15, 2011

Student-athletes SHINE and dinner with recent graduates.

Last night I got together with 6 former students - all from the Class of 2011 - at American Flatbread in Burlington and then, of course, we ended up at Ben & Jerry's for dessert. We ran into Evan Dewey and Brian Ahern on Church Street as they were on their way to dinner too. Kimmy Thevenet had contacted me earlier this week asking if we could all get together for dinner soon and I was only too happy to agree. Next to Kimmy (far left) is Jess Sanborn and then Ryan Stanley and on my left is Meaghan Cormier, Will Towne and Sarah Regan. Except for Will, all of them are living and working in the Burlington area and along with a large number of their classmates, they are enjoying Burlington, Vermont in the summer. We laughed (a lot) and talked about how they are all doing (working at a variety of places - some just for the summer and some already with full-time employment). It was great to catch up with all of them and we decided we need to do this again so the next time, it is a barbecue at my house. Chris Kenny is our Associate Athletic Director and Chris compiles data on how well our student-athletes are doing academically. He just released the latest information and it is GOOD. Overall, our student-athlete grade point average is the HIGHEST ever recorded = 3.127. These student-athletes carry a full academic load AND compete in our varsity athletic program which is also very time-consuming. For the first time, the student-athlete overall GPA of 3.127 is HIGHER than the general student body. Also, for the first time, the male student-athlete overall GPA (3.000) is HIGHER than the general male student population. The male student-athlete GPA is the HIGHEST ever. We have been attempting to convince our student-athletes, and especially our male student-athletes that they are expected to do well academically, they CAN do well, and that it is acceptable for student-athletes at SMC to do well in the classroom. Our women student-athletes GPA of 3.242 is their second HIGHEST ever. Also, we have 21 varsity teams and for the first time, 16 of those teams had a 3.0 or higher. Congratulations to the student-athletes, their faculty who work so closely with them, their coaches who support their academic achievement and to the Athletic Department for their continuing support of our initiatives to improve the academic achievement of our athletes.......

Take care, be well, and please keep all of the members of our military and our veterans in your thoughts and prayers. When President Obama awarded the Medal of Honor the other day to Army Sgt. First Class Leroy Petry it was a very moving and important occasion. HIS story is repeated over and over again by members of OUR military - his words (I did it for my brothers - to protect them) get repeated time and time again by the men and women in our Armed Forces - it is so important that we make sure that they know that they have our support - our thoughts and yes, our prayers.


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