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All About the Student-Athlete

June 12, 2012
By Eric McDowell, Union (NY), CoSIDA 3rd Vice President

ST. LOUIS, Mo. - It's all about the student athlete. The fundamental job of the sports communication professional, and every member of CoSIDA (College Sports Information Directors of America), is to serve the student athlete.

With that in mind, four student-athletes will come to St. Louis and speak to the membership, providing the first ever student-athlete panel at a CoSIDA convention on Tuesday, June 26 at 10:00 a.m. The students will discuss communications challenges from their perspective, and also how the sports communication professional can work with the student-athletes for assistance in promoting their sport programs.

The NAIA will be represented by Julie Teeple, a junior basketball player from Columbia College (Mo.). She will be joined by Alex Mendez, a junior baseball player at the University of South Florida, David Pillen, a junior football player at Abilene Christian University (Texas), and Nafeesa Connolly, a sophomore volleyball player from Simmons College (Massachusetts).

As well as presenting on a panel, the students will have a private meeting with the CoSIDA Board, and attend various events throughout their time at the convention. They will meet Dick Enberg after his panel, attend the Capital One Academic All-America Gala, and close out their stay with a presentation by Baseball Hall of Famer and St. Louis Cardinals legend Ozzie Smith at Busch Stadium.

Julie and the other students will provide their thoughts and comments, and a question and answer session will follow. The students who were selected were truly honored and humbled, and are looking forward to this wonderful and unique opportunity.

Julie is a Marketing and Management major from Versailles, Missouri.

"I am extremely honored to be selected as the first NAIA student-athlete to appear as a guest speaker at the CoSIDA Convention," she said. "As an NAIA student-athlete, I have had the wonderful opportunity to serve in a leadership role with the American Red Cross and NAIA Collegiate Leadership Program, where we learned to be a voice for all student-athletes, NAIA institutions and the communities we live in. I look forward to sharing my experiences as an NAIA student-athlete."

It is all about the student-athlete. Now, sports communications professionals from around the nation have an opportunity to hear from the source.

For additional information about CoSIDA and the 2012 CoSIDA Convention in St. Louis, Mo., click here.