Students-Athletes Come Together for SAAC Retreat
The SAAC representatives read to elementary schools kids and contacted Team IMPACT on the retreat.
The SAAC representatives read to elementary schools kids and contacted Team IMPACT on the retreat.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – The annual Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) representative retreat was held at the end of September in Alaska on the campus of Alaska Anchorage.

The purpose of this retreat was to have at least one representative from each GNAC institution meet in person to exchange ideas and learn from each other so they can better represent GNAC students.

The student-athletes arrived in Anchorage on Friday, Sept. 26 where they spent the day at Lake Otis elementary school reading to its students. Later in the day the representatives toured the recently opened Alaska Airlines Center, the home of Seawolves athletics.

On Saturday, the students, as well as GNAC assistant commissioner Bridget Johnson Tetteh, received a tour of the university from their hosts, Dede Allen and T.J. Garlatz, before getting down to business.

The representatives arranged a conference call with Team IMPACT, a nonprofit organization that pairs children with severe diseases with college athletic teams, which recently partnered with the Montana State Billings men’s soccer team to help a 6-year old with cancer.

The group later had discussions on a variety of topics including the 2015 Division II legislation and sharing individual SAAC's practices at their respective schools. The SAAC representatives also had time for some fun as they went to a Big Game park and hiked Flattop Mountain.

"Coming together in person and getting to know one another, you build connections that can only be made in person," one retreat participant said. "Being able to collaborate in person is also a huge benefit. It was beneficial to me, because I get to bring ideas and a new perspective about SAAC to my campus."

You can find more information and related stories on SAAC in the related links section of this article and under the "GNAC" tab on's home page.

The 12 representatives