ATLANTA — There are 207 student-athletes at Clark Atlanta University. Nearly 130 of them were honored with a medal Jan. 26 for accomplishments, which have nothing to do with their performance in their respective sports. Known as scholar-athletes, this group was celebrated by President Ronald A. Johnson and athletics director Lin Dawson for earning a 3.0 GPA or higher during the spring and fall semesters in 2016. There were 10 scholar-athletes to score a perfect 4.0 GPA.
This high level of achievement in the classroom is in keeping with the mission of the CAU Athletics Department, which is to cultivate and enhance student-athletes’ opportunities for academic success. This vision is met by creating an environment in which academic achievement is promoted, providing adequate resources to student-athletes and assisting them to identify academic objectives.
Danielle Veney, a member of the women’s basketball team, is one of the scholar-athletes to finish both semesters near the top of the GPA scale. We told you before about the senior criminal justice major, who uses her own money to sponsor an annual Christmas toy drive for underprivileged children in her hometown of Baltimore. “I would say that faith, focus and determination are the key factors to my success,” Veney explained.
Moses Kilpatrick nailed a perfect 4.0 GPA while running for the CAU cross-country program. The freshman speech communications major from Miami not only runs hard for the Panthers and excels in the classroom, he also volunteers as a tutor and mentor for students in DeKalb County School District. “Being a scholar-athlete means a lot to me,” Kilpatrick said. “It shows my hard work, dedication and effort pays off in the classroom where it starts, and at the finish line where it all ends.”
Athletics staff had high praise for the huge accomplishments. “CAU Athletics is very proud of the academic performance of our scholar-athletes,” said coach Lawanda Pearson, who also serves as the athletics academic advisor. “It’s remarkable when you can show more than 60 percent of your student-athletes average a 3.0 GPA or higher. We should be acknowledging their academic success.”