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Seattle Pacific, Western Washington Net Academic Awards

Friday, December 7, 2018

INDIANAPOLIS – Seattle Pacific University and Western Washington University are among 27 NCAA Division II schools that are being singled out for high academic achievement as recipients of the NCAA Presidents’ Award for Academic Excellence.

The award is presented to Division II athletic programs earning an Academic Success Rate of 90 percent or higher. Seattle Pacific was among six schools nationwide with rates of 97 percent or better while Western Washington earned a rate of 90 percent.

This is the eighth consecutive year that Seattle Pacific has earned the award and is one of 11 schools that has earned the President’s Award for Academic Excellence in each year it has been presented.

“Falcon student-athletes continue to set the standard of academic excellence and I could not be more proud of their accomplishment,” said Seattle Pacific athletic director Jackson Stava. “To again be recognized with this award is a testament to the excellence to which our student-athletes aspire and the fortitude they show in that pursuit.

For Western Washington, it is the second consecutive year that the Vikings have been recognized for meeting the key academic benchmark. The school is one of just two public institutions to be recognized, joining UC San Diego.

“While we are very proud of all of the accomplishment by our programs in competition, earning an award like this is a tremendous honor and makes us proud to have our student-athletes and coaches representing Western Washington University,” said WWU athletic director Steve Card. “To be able to balance the academic rigors of WWU along with being a high-level student-athlete, and achieving this level of success speaks volumes on the quality of our programs, and the coaches and student-athletes that work so hard to be the very best at everything they do.”

The Academic Success Rate is the percentage of student-athletes who graduate within six years of initial collegiate enrollment and includes virtually all Division II student-athletes, including transfers and those not receiving athletic scholarships.

The Division II ASR captures 48 percent more student-athletes than the federal graduation rate. Unlike the federal rate, the ASR counts non-scholarship student-athletes and those who transfer to a school after initial enrollment elsewhere, while removing student-athletes who leave school while academically eligible. The national ASR for the four cohorts of student-athletes who entered college from 2008 to 2011 is 73 percent, up one point from the previous four-year cohort.

Division II student-athletes continue to graduate at a higher rate than the general student body. The federal rate for the 2011 entering class of student-athletes increased one point to 57 percent, compared with 50 percent for the general student body.

The honors for Seattle Pacific and Western Washington are the latest in a string of academic awards for GNAC student-athletes and programs. This fall, 19 GNAC student-athletes have been recognized as Google Cloud/CoSIDA Academic All-District performers and five soccer players were named as Division II Academic All-Americans. In addition, the GNAC swept the Elite 90 awards at the NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships, recognizing the student-athletes competing at the national meet the highest cumulative GPAs.

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