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Taking flight

Sea-Hawks honoured for excellence in academics and athletics

Student Life

By Ian Coultas

Memorial University recognized 39 student-athletes that earned the U Sports Academic All-Canadian distinction for the 2016-17 academic year on Jan. 10.

The number represents 28 per cent of all of Memorial’s student-athletes.

President Gary Kachanoski and some of the student-athletes recognized for academic and athletic excellence by U Sports recently.

Student-athletes must achieve an academic standing of 80 per cent or better while playing on one of their university’s varsity teams in order to receive the U Sports Academic All-Canadian honour.

The 2016-17 Academic All-Canadians were honoured at a celebratory event hosted at the School of Human Kinetics and Recreation on Memorial’s St. John’s campus, where they received a certificate from U Sports presented by President Gary Kachanoski.

Finding the balance

Alison Poynter, women’s volleyball and a student in the School of Human Kinetics and Recreation, says to reach this level of simultaneous achievement can be daunting.

“Finding a balance between each can seem near impossible, and often times taking a moment to breathe is non-existent,” she said. “Although it may seem like there couldn’t possibly be that many hours in a week, and hard work may be the understatement of the year, we do it to represent ourselves and Memorial with pride.”

Iain Gamba, men’s soccer and a student in the Faculty of Science, says fully committing to a varsity sport while still achieving academic success is “something to be proud of.”

“I think I can speak for most of the recipients by saying that being recognized as an Academic All-Canadian is truly an honour,” he said.

All student-athletes were encouraged to invite a faculty member and academic mentor to accompany them to the event.

‘Amplifies and reinforces’

“These young men and women exemplify what university sport is all about,” said Karen Murphy, director, Varsity Athletics.

“They demonstrate that success in sport doesn’t hamper academic achievement and being a scholar doesn’t impede athletic excellence. Achievement in one amplifies and reinforces achievement in the other.”

A full list of the students and their sport and school or faculty can be found here.


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