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Union earns NAIA Five Star Award, named in championship of character top-25

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - 10/19/2010 - Union (Tenn.) University is once again named as an NAIA Five Star Champions of Character Institution. Union is listed as one of the top-25 highest scores in the NAIA on the championship of character scorecard. Union is also apart of the TranSouth Conference, one of only two conferences nationwide to have all members to make the grade of 60 points or higher. Union scored 80 points.

MAKING THE GRADE: NAIA INSTITUTIONS AND CONFERENCES RECOGNIZED WITH FIVE STAR AWARD
Over 70% of NAIA Members Score 60 Points or More on Champions of Character Scorecard

Link to Full Release and list of schools

When it comes to advancing character-driven intercollegiate athletics, NAIA members are making the grade, according to results of the 2009-10 NAIA Champions of Character Scorecard released today by the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

The Association, which boasts a proud reputation as an arena that promotes competitive athletics, academic excellence and character values simultaneously, will recognize 204 colleges and universities and 20 conferences with the Champions of Character Five Star Award. To receive the award members scored 60 or more points on the NAIA Champions of Character Scorecard and conferences named to the list had at least 60% of its member schools making the grade with 60 or more points.

”It is rewarding to see NAIA colleges, universities and conferences taking a leadership role in the NAIA’s mission to advance character-driven athletics,” said Jim Carr, NAIA president and CEO. “With significant focus on using athletics as a vehicle to teach life lessons there is no doubt we will have a positive impact on our 60,000 student-athletes. Encompassing efforts from across the association signals important differences in how the NAIA conducts athletic competition. That distinction sets us apart and I’m very proud of that.”

The Scorecard was crafted to convert the NAIA’s vision and strategy into measurable goals and to monitor progress towards advancing character-driven intercollegiate athletics. The initiative supports performance-driven athletics while defining expectations and standards that drive successful teams and athletics departments.

Institutions were measured based on a demonstrated commitment to Champions of Character and earned points in each of the following categories: character training, conduct in competition, academic focus, character recognition and character promotion. Institutions earned points based on exceptional student-athlete grade point averages and by obtaining zero ejections during competition throughout the course of the academic year.

Over 70% of member institutions and 77% of member conferences were named to the Five Star list. The top five schools include Cornerstone (Mich.) University, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, Cumberland (Tenn.) University, Southwestern (Kan.) College and Westmont (Calif.) College. Midlands Collegiate Athletic Conference and TranSouth Athletic Conference landed in the top spot with 100% of its member schools making the grade.

Five Star Award recipients will be recognized on the NAIA Champions of Character website, and receive a special web banner and certificate noting the honor. Presidents, athletics directors and conference commissioners at award winning colleges, universities or conferences also will be recognized at the 70th Annual NAIA National Convention in April.

The Scorecard process is based on the NAIA’s flagship program Champions of Character, which emphasizes the five core values of integrity, respect, responsibility, sportsmanship and servant leadership. To learn more about the NAIA Champions of Character Scorecard and Five Star Award visit www.ChampionsofCharacter.org. Kathy Busch, Champions of Character coordinator, will distribute web banners and certificates to all award recipients. Email kbusch@naia.org with any questions.

#UNION#


Steven Aldridge
Phone: (731) 661-5027
Sports Information
Fax: (731) 661-5182

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