Dear Alumni and Friends,
This fall, Nebraska Wesleyan University inducted seven alumni to its Athletic Hall of Fame: Chris Baum (’91) (Spirit of the Plainsman Award), Steve Burks (’94) (track and field), Steve Deshazer (’92) (football), Mark Grabau (’85) (basketball), Jennifer Guthrie Moore (’96) (track and field), Kirk Penner (’92) (basketball) and Carrie Broomfield Sullivan (’97) (volleyball). Congratulations to them all!
When I spoke at their induction breakfast during Homecoming Weekend in September, I told these seven honorees, their family members, guests, and everyone else who had gathered to celebrate, that at Nebraska Wesleyan, the link between student and athlete in student-athlete is not just a hyphen; it’s a weld.
We take great pride at Nebraska Wesleyan that everyone who goes onto the field, the court, or the course in an NWU athletic uniform is a student first. It’s a matter of real significance to us that our coaches handle their duties like anyone else who has a teaching assignment. Yes, we’re competitive, we aim to win, and our teams have compiled impressive records over the years. But that’s hardly the whole story with intercollegiate athletics at Nebraska Wesleyan.
The story is only complete when it’s been told that NWU ranks high nationally among universities and colleges of all sizes in the number of Academic All-America Awards, with 116. The story is only complete when it’s been told that NWU student-athletes pursue every major available at this liberal arts university: biochemistry and business, accounting and athletic training, physics and philosophy, education and economics, and more. The story is only complete when it’s been told that to date 42 Nebraska Wesleyan student-athletes have been awarded NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships, putting NWU in third place among more than 400 NCAA Division III schools and in fifth place among NCAA members in all three divisions combined.
The story is only complete when we celebrate the character, integrity, sportmanship and growth of NWU student-athletes as they move on from Nebraska Wesleyan as graduates and responsible citizens.
The new Nebraska Wesleyan identity initiative has as its theme, “The Difference Is Experience. Your Experience.” NWU student-athletes, with that weld firmly in place, show the truth and power of our claim over and over again through their experiences.
When you support NWU athletics, you support a great tradition. Thank you for that support!