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Eagle Scholars program has student-athletes bringing "A-game" to the classroom

Campus News | August 22, 2016

The University will induct 160 student-athletes into this year’s class of Eagle Scholars. Student-athletes with a 3.25 GPA become members and qualify to wear the Eagle Scholars patch on their uniforms during the regular season.

(Aug. 22, 2016) – Carson-Newman University will welcome 160 student-athletes into its Eagle Scholars Program during its annual awards ceremony Tuesday, August 30. The group marks the program's fourth class inducted since it began in 2013.

The Eagle Scholars Program recognizes academic achievements among Carson-Newman student-athletes. To become an Eagle Scholar, student-athletes must have a GPA of 3.25 or higher. Eagle Scholars receive a patch to wear on their uniforms during regular season competition

Carson-Newman is the only school in the South Atlantic Conference to offer such a program.

It was the teamwork of Gloria Walker and Amy Humphrey, members of the University's Student Success Center that helped to bring the program together in 2013.

The academic initiative has seen a surge in inductees with the inaugural class being composed of 72 student-athletes. Last year's class boasted 127 members. With averaging 450 student-athletes on campus, the University is able to report that over a quarter carry at least a 3.25 GPA.

Walker says the program's success can be credited for generating healthy competitiveness among athletes and athletic teams. But it's the buy-in from coaches and students that has impressed her most.

"We had student-athletes taking classes this summer because they were so close to that 3.25 GPA," said Walker. "They did that specifically to reach that goal."

Walker added that the program's exceptional growth has created unexpected interest. "I got call from a high school in Nashville that saw it on our website last year and wants me to come and talk to them about doing this on a high school level."

The Eagles Scholars Awards Ceremony will be held at 7:30 p.m. in Holt Field House.