NAU Student-Athletes Excel in Classroom; Break Semester GPA Record
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - The Northern
Arizona University athletics department recorded a semester grade
point average of 3.12 among its more than 300 student-athletes at
the completion of the fall semester, the best mark since grade
records began in 1997.
The Lumberjacks also posted the second best cumulative average with a 3.11 departmental GPA. In addition to the semester records, it marked the 15th semester out of the last 16 overall that the Lumberjack student-athletes have recorded a 3.00 cumulative GPA or higher. Overall, 43 student-athletes earned a semester 4.0 GPA and 180 earned a semester 3.0 GPA. The women’s track team leads the department with 21 players with a 3.5 or higher cumulative GPA, over half of the squad. Women’s Tennis also had an outstanding semester with four out of the seven women receiving a semester 4.00 GPA. The positive grade report comes after a semester that produced a school-record fifty-five student-athletes participating in the 2011 spring commencement ceremonies.
Most recently, the NAU athletics department has opened two new academic facilities, located in the Skydome and the Health and Learning Center athletic offices. “The culture and focus on academic success is exceptional all over campus. Having two brand new computer labs that are equipped with new computers and printers, as well as new study facilities that are dedicated to our student-athletes have aided in the success this semester,” commented Assistant Athletic Director and Director of Academic Services, Pam Lowie.
The football, volleyball, swimming & diving, women’s indoor and outdoor track and field, and women’s cross country all broke semester GPA records, which led to the overall increase. Since 1998, NAU student athletes have earned a 3.0 cumulative GPA or higher in 26 out of 29 semesters.
“It is outstanding to see our student-athletes achieving such high success in the classroom again this semester. The term grade point average of 3.12 is a testament to the high caliber of students that our coaches are both recruiting and retaining here at NAU,” said Lowie.
Women’s cross country team posted the best semester GPA at 3.56 in the fall of 2011, followed closely by volleyball (3.54), and women’s golf (3.52). The men’s and women’s indoor, outdoor and cross country squads each improved their term and cumulative GPA after this semester, which is quite a feat for the 70- plus person roster.
NAU Director of Track Eric Heins stated “This past year our student-athletes made it a priority to focus on their academics. We have a strong group of seniors that have done a great job of leading our younger student-athletes. Our coaching staff has done a great job of finding student-athletes that are committed to success in the classroom as well as athletics. Having the academic study center in the HLC has made an incredible difference for our student-athletes, because they now have a place to study that is always available to them.”