While many colleges struggle with keeping their athletes on the ball in the classroom, GVSU student athletes are making the grade
When a student walks through the doors of Grand Valley State University for the first time, they will do so knowing they will have to meet high academic standards throughout their educational career.
At GVSU, the same can be said for the student athletes.
While that may seem obvious, there are countless examples of colleges and universities who have been investigated and found guilty of helping athletes cheat in the classroom to stay eligible on the field. The most recent example of this was at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In an internal review that was completed by NCU, there were 54 instances of no-show classes where student-athletes were given grades for fake classes. Further investigation found that the academic fraud was aided by two department heads and possibly by advisors at the school.
What was reason for the scandal? To keep players eligible so they could compete for North Carolina’s sports teams.
Instances like this have hurt the perception of student athletes from the high school level through the college level and into the professional realm. For a lot of athletes, the idea of being the stereotypical “jock,” is not only offensive, it’s untrue. GVSU student softball player, Katie Martin, said at GVSU, the team works to dispel these common misconceptions.
“There is the perception that we are just jocks,” Martin said. “That is an image we are trying to break away from. We are more student athletes.”
While that may be the case at other universities, students at GVSU like Martin have the numbers to back it up. Graduation and retention rates for student athletes are nine percent higher than the rest of the student body, and 61.4 percent of student athletes have above a 3.0 grade point average. This is telling of not only the work ethic of our students, but the environment that has been cultivated around them – one that values student athletes as students first, athletes second.
So, while other universities struggle to keep athletes eligible by any way necessary, students, faculty and staff at GVSU should be proud to hear that our student athletes are excelling where it matters most: in the classroom.
Pictures of the Year 2012-2013
8:00 am | MBA Information Meeting: AM session
10:00 am | SAP Farm Stand
5:30 pm | MBA Information Meeting: PM Session
11:00 am | GVSU Track & Field at NCAA Championships
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