Page 20 - William Woods University - Summer 2013

SUMMER | 2013
What we're hootin' about
Dr. LeRoy Walker
Champions of
Character Award to
Jacob Harrison
Jacob Harrison
is the national
recipient of the Dr. LeRoy Walker
Champions of Character Award.
Harrison, a baseball player, is the
first WWU student-athlete to win
the national award.
A Fulton High School graduate, Harrison
graduated from WWU in May with majors in
exercise science and sports management and
minors in business administration
and coaching.
The Dr. LeRoy Walker
Champions of Character
Award, one of the most
prestigious awards in the
NAIA, is given annually to
an NAIA student-athlete who
has outstanding academic
achievement, campus, and
community leadership, and
who embraces the five core
values of the Champions of
Character program: integrity, respect,
responsibility, sportsmanship, and
servant leadership.
We have had a few student-athletes
who have been recognized as the American
Midwest Conference’s winner and national
nominee, but we have never had one receive
the national award,”
Jason Vittone
athletic director, said.
Harrison has won numerous honors
while at William Woods. As a junior, he was
awarded the Helen Stephens Award. The
award is selected by the athletic department
and is regarded as the department’s
highest honor.
Team captain since his sophomore year,
Harrison is a three-time Academic All-AMC
recipient, an NAIA Scholar-Athlete, a member
of Omicron Delta Kappa National Leadership
Honor Society and a member of President’s
Twenty. He was recently named to Who's
Who Among Students in American
Universities & Colleges.
WWU hosts
International Saddle
Seat Invitational
By Rebekah Savage '14
William Woods University students this year
had the rare opportunity to work beside the
newly formed U.S. Saddle Seat Young Rider
team. On April 4-6, saddle seat riders from
three countries competed in the International
Saddle Seat Invitational, held at William
Woods for the first time.
The United States Equestrian Federation
USEF) formed the U.S. Saddle Seat Young
Rider Team to develop riders for future U.S.
Saddle Seat World Cup competitions. During
years that the Saddle Seat World Cup
competition is not held, members of the
Young Rider Team will be eligible to
represent the United States in other
international competitions.
The riders this year were between 14
and 19. Because it was an invitational
competition, the riders were selected by a
committee and did not try out for the team.
Sixty applications were received and, after an
extensive review, 12 riders were selected to
represent the United States.
Although this was the first year for
WWU to host the International Saddle Seat
Invitational, the university has hosted the
United States Saddle Seat Equitation
World Cup Team Trials every other
year since 1996.
During the years the cup is not held, an
international competition is held in its place.
In December 2011, two WWU students,
Murphy McSemek
Alyssa Wick
gold representing the United States in a
Saddle Seat Invitational in South Africa.
WWU saddle seat students groomed for
the riders in the invitational. Each student was
assigned a horse, and worked and got paid as
a groom.
Sarah Track
clinical instructor of saddle
seat at WWU, said, “I was thrilled to be able
to have the international element here on
campus; it was great exposure for the school.
People experienced the campus and saw the
school. It's a big deal. This has been really
great for William Woods.”
Team USA lines up, carrying the American flag.
Wearing their silver medals, Team Canada
parades with their flag.
Members of Team South Africa wait to receive
their medals.
Photos by Rachel Fancsali