Villanova Takes Home Big East Presidents’ Award


Courtesy of The Sun Chronicle

Villanova Takes Home Big East Presidents’ Award

Owen Carberry

Recently, The University received the great honor of the Big East Presidents’ Award for the 2017-2018 school year. From its inception in 2015, this award has recognized the Big East institution whose student athletes best demonstrate achievement in academics, athletics and citizenship.

A committee comprised of academic and athletic administrators from each Big East school came together to evaluate the field and select Villanova, giving the University its second President’s Award and first since  the 2015-2016 school year.

Some of the academic highlights that helped the Wildcats take home the award included an overall student athlete GPA for its Big East teams of 3.217 for the year, in addition to 162 student-athletes being included on the Dean’s List (3.5 GPA or above) in the fall semester and 183 in the spring semester.

Top achievements on the court included NCAA tournament berths for both the men’s and women’s basketball teams, headlined by the men’s second national championship in three years. The men’s lacrosse team attained its highest-ever national ranking of No. 4 and earned a bid in the NCAA tournament, while the men’s track and field team captured its fourth Big East indoor title in five years.

When it came to model citizenship and service, the Wildcats were just as impressive. Student athletes logged 2,920 hours of community service. This effort in giving back to the community was highlighted by the annual St. Thomas of Villanova Day of Service, where 360 athletes and coaches joined together to serve in the Philadelphia area and beyond. Programs that helped The University stand out included the UNITAS student athlete organizations, which focused on important social issues and Sexual Violence Prevention training for athletes.

University President Rev. Peter M. Donohue, O.S.A., Ph.D. had high praise for the student athletes whose hard work helped bring home this recognition. 

“Villanova student-athletes continue to embody the values and characteristics that define our University community,” Donohue stated. “From academic and athletic excellence, to inclusivity and service to others, I am extremely proud to have such wonderful representatives of Villanova. I congratulate everyone involved with Villanova Athletics on receiving this honor.”

Director of Athletics Mark Jackson was equally praiseworthy in his remarks.  “[The] unified commitment toward academic excellence, athletic achievement and a willingness to serve the greater community exemplified by our coaches, staff and student-athletes on a daily basis.” Jackson said, “This is truly an award reflective of the entire Villanova community.”

With the 2018-2019 academic year in full swing, the student athletes on campus will surely seek to build on last year’s award-winning efforts on the field, in the classroom and in the greater community.