NORTON, Mass. – Wheaton College (Mass.) has been recognized by the National Association of Division III Athletic Administrators (NADIIIAA) with the NADIIIAA/Jostens Community Service Honorable Mention Award in the category of ‘On-Going Project.’ The award was presented to Interim Director of Athletics John Sutyak ’00 at the NCAA Convention this past weekend in Indianapolis, Indiana.
The NADIIIAA recognizes institutions and/or conferences for the impressive community service projects performed by their student-athletes during the academic year. This prestigious awards program is co-sponsored by Jostens and is intended to recognize the many contributions that Division III student-athletes make to their communities. The purpose is to make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate.
This past year, the Wheaton men’s basketball, men’s lacrosse, and field hockey programs adopted a unit of troops in Afghanistan. The student-athletes wrote letters to the soldiers and often sent packages which included DVD’s, holidays cards, magazines, newspapers, and items made my local youths.
Additionally, the teams hung a flag signed by each soldier in the unit at all home contests, a constant reminder of their friends and family members overseas. The field hockey team also collected donations for the troops from parents and participants at their annual 32-team indoor tournament last January.
"We are honored to have been chosen as one of the recipients of the Jostens Community Service Award from the National Association of Division III Athletic Administrators,” said Sutyak. “I know that NADIIIAA receives numerous nominations for these awards each year, so it’s a privilege for Wheaton to be honored by the organization. This award speaks volumes about Wheaton College and our student-athletes. It was thrilling to receive this recognition in front of our Division III peers at the NCAA convention. "
In addition to receiving commemorative trophies, the NADIIIAA and Jostens will make a $1,000 contribution to the general scholarship fund of each of the institutions honored.
The NADIIIAA is an association comprised of athletics administrators from the nearly 450 institutions and 40 conferences competing at the NCAA Division III level. 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.