OSWEGO — SUNY Oswego’s intercollegiate athletics department has been named the national winner for the Jostens/National Association Division III Athletic Administrators Community Service Award in two categories — An Array of Projects and On-going Project/Activity completed during the 2012-2013 academic year.
The NADIIIAA and Jostens will make a $1,000 contribution, for each award, to the SUNY Oswego general scholarship fund, with the school also receiving commemorative trophies.
NADIIIAA/Jostens co-sponsor this awards program to recognize the contributions that Division III student-athletes regularly make on their campuses and local communities. Recognition honors projects in three categories: One-Time Projects, An Array of Projects and Ongoing Projects.
Oswego was chosen as the national winner for the second straight year for An Array of Projects/Activities and as overall winner for the On-Going Project/Activity out of more than 450 eligible university nominations across the nation.
“Earning the nod in both categories shows the commitment of the student-athletes, the athletic department and community service coordinator Dan Witmer,” said Director of Athletics Sue Viscomi. “It is an incredible honor to receive two out of the top three national awards. Oswego continues to be very proud of its outstanding effort and engagement in the community.”
For the Array of Projects category, 24 Laker athletic teams participated in 44 different events in 2012-13.
The student-athletes supported over 19 organizations and charities including the Special Olympics, American Cancer Society, Make-A-Wish Foundation, St. Baldrick’s Foundation, United Way and Carol M. Baldwin Breast Cancer Research Fund, Inc.
They also helped local groups such as the Greater Oswego-Fulton Chamber of Commerce, local school districts, Move Along, Inc. and Oswego State Minor Hockey Association.
Overall, 463 student-athletes contributed approximately 3,042 community service hours.
For the On-going Project/Activity category, Oswego State created the “St. Baldrick’s Night in Oswego County” event in 2007, where student-athletes, non-athletes and members throughout the community would come to shave their heads and raise money to donate to children affected by cancer.
In 2013, 235 heads were shaved, which raised more than $93,000. In seven years of running the event, more than $266,500 has been raised for the cause.
NADIIIAA is an association comprised of athletics administrators from NCAA Division III institutions around the country. A primary purpose of the NADIIIAA is to encourage the continued development of athletics programs focused on the student-athlete and based on sound educational philosophy.