Batsula, Buhr, and Stinnett receive "Most Outstanding Student" Awards

Thursday, May 01, 2008

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (May 1, 2008) - Each year the ETSU faculty selects its "Most Outstanding Students" from each department and three Buccaneer student-athletes were recently given the awards in their respective fields. Olya Batsula (Women's Tennis) was the top student in the Kinesiology, Leisure and Sport Sciences, Sarah Buhr (Volleyball) in Foreign Languages, and Alyson Stinnett (Cheerleading) in Accounting.


Batsula is graduating Magna Cum Laude and will receive her Bachelor of Science in Sport and Leisure Management this weekend. The women's tennis team captain was also named First Team All-Atlantic Sun in 2006 and Second Team All-Atlantic Sun in 2007. The native from Minsk, Belarus also participated in the 2007 National Leadership Conference and was the ETSU women's tennis Academic MVP in 2006-07. 


Buhr - who received the award for excelling and having interest in the field of foreign languages - graduated Summa Cum Laude this past fall. The Stockton, Calif. native was named to the Atlantic Sun All-Academic Team, Volleyball Academic MVP in 2005 and 2006, and ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District Second Team.


Stinnett will receive her Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting after she was selected to the Ned McWherter Scholars Program at ETSU. She also received two outstanding scholarships (Lamar Alexander and Glen N. Barker) and is apart of Beta Alpha Psi and Phi Kappa Phi. Stinnett also received the Tennessee Society of CPA's Appalachian Chapter Scholarship and is graduating Summa Cum Laude this weekend.


These three highly recognized Bucs are among 10 student-athletes who received prestigious honors at the Academic Excellence Convocation last month.


Below is the full list of those student-athletes who received awards:

Summa Cum Laude

Sarah Buhr - Volleyball (Foreign Language)

Alyson Stinnett - Cheerleading (Accounting)


Magna Cum Laude

Olya Batsula - Women's Tennis (Sport & Leisure Management)


Cum Laude

Jennifer Emerson - Volleyball (Biology)

Shane Estes - Track and Field (Marketing)

Natalia Giraldo - Women's Golf (Finance)

Hannah Johnson - Women's Soccer (Special Education)

Oscar Posada - Men's Tennis (Accounting)

Gareth Shaw - Men's Golf (Management)

Brooke Wilhoit - Women's Basketball (Physical Education)


"It makes me and my staff feel a true sense of gratitude that we have the opportunity daily to work with student-athletes who achieve honors such as these and who are publicly recognized as the best students at East Tennessee State University," commented ETSU's Director of Academic Services Bob Baker.  "These honors validate what we in the athletic department have known for sometime that our student-athletes are exceptional not only on the field but in the classroom as well."


Everyday ETSU student-athletes strive to be the best in the classroom, community and practice. According to the latest NCAA Graduation Rate Report, the numbers prove that Buccaneer athletes are some of the strongest students among the ETSU student body.


In the latest NCAA Graduation Rate Report, Buccaneer student-athletes have continued to graduate at a higher level than the rest of ETSU's student body. ETSU student-athletes are graduating 19-percent higher than the student body on campus - which has increased since the last report that was released.


In total, 27 ETSU student-athletes will say good-bye to ETSU this weekend as they prepare to graduate.


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