New Orleans and Central Arkansas Receive Southland Institutional Awards

first_imgUCA snapped Houston Baptist University four-year claim to this award and joins other previous winners McNeese, Northwestern State and former Southland member Oral Roberts. FRISCO, Texas – The University of New Orleans earned the Southland Strong Community Service Award for the 2019-20 academic year, while the University of Central Arkansas received the league’s Academic Performance Award. Southland Commissioner Tom Burnett announced the winners during last week’s Advisory Council meetings and both schools will be recognized as part of the inaugural Southland Virtual Awards Ceremony tonight at 5 p.m. on Facebook Live. For the 2018-19 academic year, UCA had eight teams post perfect 1,000 APR scores, and had a 990 average score for all 18 programs. For the four-year period of 2015-16 through 2018-19, UCA averaged 986 with four programs recording perfect scores.   “This accomplishment reflects our work over multiple years, so many are deserving of credit,” said UCA President Houston Davis. “It reflects the hard work of our student-athletes and the commitment of our coaches, but it also reflects the commitment of all UCA faculty and staff in our university community.  All this effort and support led us to this accolade. We are proud of our student-athletes and proud to be a part of the Southland Conference family.” Central Arkansas claimed the Southland’s Institutional Academic Performance Award, which is presented annually to the member institution compiling the highest APR average based on a seven-point scale and percentage calculation. UCA captured 71 percent of the maximum accumulated points the institution could receive, based on the number of conference sports in which UCA participates. This award included the four-year APR averages from 2015-16 through 2018-19. UCA is the first public Southland Conference university to win the academic performance award in five years.center_img The Southland Strong Community Service Award is presented to the institution whose Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) exhibited exceptional community service. Among the Privateers service this year, they participated in an initiative called #NOLAsTeam is Blessed to be a Blessing. SAAC partnered with the local non-profit organization called Blessed to be a Blessing and pledge to donate 504 (the New Orleans area code) “Blessing Bags” to the homeless. SAAC strategized on the contents of each bag, that included some fresh water, snacks, personal toiletries, a new pair of socks and a hand-written inspirational note in each bag. They coordinated collection of the items, organized bag-packing parties and two different downtown delivery dates. All 178 members of SAAC, along with various coaches and administrators, contributed to this initiative. The UNO SAAC plans to continue its relationship with Blessed to be a Blessing and the New Orleans Mission to continue to help the homeless population in the future. “You never know where people come from and their story,” said Nicole Broussard, UNO SAAC President. “It was really humbling to see the appreciation they had for us. I appreciate them because they have impacted my life, permanently. All the student-athletes talked about how good it made them feel to go out and help people, so I hope it has a lasting impact on them at this university.”last_img

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