SAAC represents athletes, helps community

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The Student Athletic Advisory Committee has been representing student athletes for as long as most of us have been alive and is continuing to do so.

The importance of SAAC is to enhance the total student-athlete experience by promoting opportunity, protecting student-athlete welfare and fostering a positive student athlete image, according to the NCAA. In 1989, SAAC was formed for student athletes to have leadership opportunities by representing their fellow student athletes.

“With being a student athlete it’s really hard for us to get involved in things outside of our sport and our classes,” SAAC leader Kallie Schoonover said. “It gives us a chance to help out the community and represent the student athletes for our university.”

Like our SGA, where there is a panel of students representing the entire student body, in SAAC there is a panel of student athletes being the voice of all student athletes. Instead of having senate members, there are leaders. Leaders are chosen by coaches selecting nominees, and those nominees are voted on other representatives from SAAC.

“The best part about SAAC is being able to relate to and be a voice for student athletes and getting what they want done,” SAAC leader Harrison Cobb said.

SAAC is an organization whose members are only athletes representing our school. Although it is only for athletes, anyone can help accomplish the goals of the organization.

“We’re making the effort to better in the community,” Cobb said. “We’re always looking for ways to improve the campus and game atmosphere. We appreciate people’s help when we’re trying to do those things.”

One way SAAC fosters a positive student athlete image is by participating in community service programs. Some of the programs they have already done this year are their annual “Night out on the Griffs” and “Griffs Giving Gifts.”

Night out on the Griffs is an evening where young kids in the community come out to play games with Western athletes every finals week of the fall semester. Griffs Giving Gifts is held for both Thanksgiving and Christmas to help out the community during the holidays.

An event still to come will be the third annual dodge ball tournament for canned foods April 4 at 7 p.m. in the old gym in Looney. Any student will be able to participate in the tournament. If you would like to get involved, send an email to mwsusaac@yahoo.com to enter in your team. Even if you don’t wish to participate in the games, canned foods or money donations would still greatly help the cause.

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