UCSD Honors Top Tritons on National Student-Athlete Day

    The UCSD Department of Intercollegiate Athletics recognized
    several of its student athletes at a luncheon held at the UCSD Faculty Club on
    April 14 in celebration of National Student-Athlete Day. Seniors Todd
    Bettisworth, Randelle Bundy, Diane Dunn, Meaghan Noud, Henry Patterson, David
    Payne and Melissa Ward, juniors Ryan Bailey, Garrett Imeson, Jillian Sola and
    Caryn Urbandczyk and sophomore Steven Donohoe were honored for their athletic
    and academic accomplishments as well as community service projects on and off
    campus. All of the honored student athletes have earned both Provost and
    Athletic Director’s Honor Roll while being important members of their
    respective teams.

    Softball’s Bundy, a senior majoring in environmental systems
    with a 3.69 GPA, was the student athlete who spoke on behalf of those honored.
    In particular, Bundy chose to share the credit for their success with all of
    the adults that play such crucial roles in the lives of student athletes.

    “Most of this is due to the wonderful coaches and
    administrators that are here at this school who have helped us and stood by our
    side, even if it’s been difficult at times,” she said.

    In addition to coaches and administrators, the student
    athletes were quick to recognize their teammates as being just as dedicated in
    their academic endeavors. Noud, a first team All-CCAA selection for the women’s
    basketball team, understands the challenge that constant travel can play in
    keeping up with UCSD’s demanding schoolwork.

    “Everybody works really hard,” Noud, a senior biology major
    with a 3.62, said. “We’re studying on every road trip, and I really think that
    it shows a lot with all these athletes; that they can do this sport and compete
    with other students academically as well.”

    While the athletes were quick to give credit to others who
    helped them, they were also appreciative of the hard-earned award. Patterson, a
    member of the CCAA Tournament Champion men’s basketball team, was excited to be
    honored academically so soon after accomplishing such an important athletic
    goal.

    “It feels great,” Patterson, a senior political science
    major with a 3.4 GPA, said. “To be able to carry [such an academic load],
    regardless of if you are playing sports or not, I think it’s a tremendous
    feat.”

    The distinguished group also went beyond the assumed norm of
    academics and sports as all honored recipients brought impressive resumes of
    community service. From working with programs ranging from the After-School
    All-Stars to Habitat for Humanity, the honorees took on a load that
    demonstrates just how much can be accomplished as a student athlete at UCSD.

    In all cases, these athletes will continue with the
    dedication that brought them recognition, some even at higher levels of
    education. Noud has been accepted to the medical school at the University
    of Chicago
    and Patterson will
    intern at a law office before enrolling in law school.

    For these student athletes, perhaps the best part of the
    ceremony was getting recognition for their hard classroom work as well as their
    athletic achievements. Ward, the left-handed ace for the nationally ranked
    women’s softball team, enjoyed being seen as more than just a jock at an
    otherwise academic-focused school.

    “Most of the time at this school you are recognized for
    being an athlete,” Ward said. “It’s nice to get recognized for being a
    student.”

    Many of the honored athletes are upperclassmen, and as their
    sports careers come to a close here at UCSD, they must face the prospect of
    life after school. Luckily for these students, they have been able to dominate
    the classroom just as much as their athletic competition, leaving them in a
    position not only to handle but to excel at their chosen fields.

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