By Edythe Y. Bradley
After capturing back-to-back SIAC Citizenship Awards in 2011 and 2012, the Albany State University Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) inducted new members and officers to continue its mission and goals for the 2012-2013 term. New members and officers were sworn in by Advisor Stanley McCormick, assistant men’s basketball coach, at recent induction ceremonies.
“We are honored to welcome new members into our SAAC program. The 2011-2012 term was another banner year for SAAC and we look forward to having a successful year this season,” McCormick said. “We have a great lineup of student-athletes and we are confident that our program will continue its tradition of providing outstanding student-athlete services and community services.”
Softball representative, Vanessa Jones, was sworn in as president for the upcoming year. Lady Rams tennis player, Reanah Kellogg, will serve as vice president and Ashley Chunn, captain of the cheerleading squad, will serve as secretary. The treasurer and parliamentarian are track and field athletes Nehemya Price and Ebony Stone. The male and female representatives are football player, Janell Jones, and cheerleader, Brandie Hall.
Other SAAC members are Adrienne Morris and Jennifer Johnson, who represent volleyball; and James Lodman and Eric Martin who represent men’s basketball. Danielle Colson and Kedeemya Cooper represent women’s basketball, and Corbin Williams and Stephen Lightfoot represent baseball. Also inducted were Virginia Morris, softball; Ashley Bynum, tennis; and Sherinna Lewis, women’s track and field. Also inducted into the SAAC was Dallas Neloms, president of the Health, Physical Education and Recreation (HPER) Club.
The SAAC will form partnerships with other student-athlete organizations, including the Health, Physical Education and Recreation (HPER) Club; Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA); and Chi Alpha Sigma Student Athlete Honor Society, to create more opportunities for service, McCormick said.
In her acceptance speech as president, Williams said she is excited about the upcoming season and doing more service work for the Albany State and local communities. “I encourage our SAAC members to follow by our principles and work with me to reach these lofty expectations,” the third-year SAAC member said. “We have established ourselves as a group that is build on hard work, dedication and togetherness. We will continue to be the spirit of the ASU Athletics Department.”
The SAAC is a NCAA-mandated committee made up of student-athletes from each sport and cheerleading who provide insight on the student-athlete experience and to offer input on the rules, regulations, and policies that affect student-athletes’ lives at Albany State. The SAAC serves as a conduit of communication among student-athletes, coaches and athletic administrators on issues to improve the student-athlete experience and promote growth and education through sports participation.
The induction service was the culminating event of a week of activities and programs sponsored by the ASU SAAC. During the week, SAAC sponsored line dance aerobics classes for ASU faculty, staff and students, and a Ram Rally to cheer ASU fall sports teams to victory. Also, the group sponsored an educational workshop on health issues including STDs and sexual responsibility.
The ASU SAAC also sponsors several community service projects throughout the year, including Make-A-Wish Foundation, and food and clothing drives. The group, which has been honored by the SIAC for its continuous work in the community for several years, was recently awarded the 2012 SIAC SAAC Citizenship Award. The award is presented annually to the program which has completed the most community service projects and other initiatives on their campuses and in their communities.