A total of 363 West Virginia University student-athletes were recognized for their achievement in the classroom, Wednesday evening, at the annual Garrett Ford Academic Honor Roll Banquet.
Implemented in 1989, the Garrett Ford Academic Honor Roll was created to recognize students who have achieved a grade point average of 3.0 or better. Since the program began in 1989, nearly 4,000 student-athletes have earned a place on the honor roll.
Student-athletes from all 17 sports teams, in addition to cheerleading and athletic training, gathered at Waterfront Place Hotel for dinner and acknowledgment of their academic achievements. Ford, who retired last year after 44 years at WVU, addressed the student-athletes, encouraging them to take advantage of the opportunities presented to them.
"The annual Student-Athlete Academic Success Banquet was a huge success," says Dr. Paul Downey, Director, Student-Athlete Academic Services. "The students look forward to this event each year, and I think the timing is perfect as we head into finals week pretty soon."
Volleyball's Abby Monson represented the student-athletes as a speaker at the event. She was awarded the inaugural Advisor's Award, which represents significant leadership, initiative and motivation of WVU student-athletes through the SAAC (Student-Athlete Advisory Committee).
Kevin Jones of the men's basketball team received the Male Student-Athlete Community Service Outreach Award, while Elizabeth Gulick of the volleyball team received the Female Student-Athlete Community Service Outreach Award. Women's soccer was recognized with the team award for community service outreach.
"The addition of the SAAC and community service awards added a special touch to this year's banquet," says Downey. "Our student-athletes give of themselves to the University and the community, and it's important to take time to recognize their efforts."