BELLINGHAM, Wash. – Thirty Western Washington University student-athletes will participate in graduation ceremonies to be held Saturday, June 10, at the newly renovated Carver Gymnasium on the WWU campus.
The list of participants includes student-athletes who have earned All-America, All-GNAC and academic awards during their careers at Western.
This group of Vikings were part of one of the most successful seasons in WWU Athletics history, with 13 of 15 intercollegiate programs reaching the NCAA Division II Championships and an 11th-place finish out of over 300 Division II schools in the 2016-17 Learfield Directors’ Cup standings. For the first time in WWU history, two teams won national championships during a school year, with the women’s soccer and women’s rowing teams bringing home the 10th and 11th team national titles in school history.
While having success in competition, WWU student-athletes continued to shine in the classroom as well. Using the NCAA Academic Success Rate, which includes all freshmen student-athletes from the fall of 2009 and also accounts for student-athletes who transfer into or out of the institution, WWU posted an 86 percent success rate, compared to the NCAA II national number of 71 percent. WWU’s federal grad rate for student-athletes for the entering class of 2009, which looks only at how many freshmen student-athletes who received athletically based financial aid and graduated within six years, was 85 percent, compared to the NCAA II national rate of 56 percent.
Amongst the WWU student-athletes who will participate in the graduation ceremonies are men’s basketball All-American and 2016-17 GNAC Player of the Year Taylor Stafford (Chicago, IL), women’s basketball All-American and 2016-17 GNAC Player of the Year Taylor Peacocke (Kenmore, WA), three-time First Team All-American javelin thrower Bethany Drake (Sandy, OR), who will receive her master’s degree, women’s soccer All-American Caitlyn Jobanek (Springfield, OR), four-year volleyball letterwinner Bryce Larson (Mukilteo, WA) standout triple jumper Jasmine McMullin (Sequim, WA), All-Region golfer Brett Johnson (Ridgefield, WA) and national championship rowers Kia Parrish-Haim (Ashland, OR), Emily Bartlett (Broadlands, VA), Mary Harper (Seattle, WA), Molly Ware (Olympia, WA) and Nicole Vanderzanden (Vancouver, WA).
Additionally, 10 WWU student-athletes graduated as part of commencement ceremonies following Fall and Winter quarters.
“This is a really special event to see our student-athletes reach the ultimate goal of graduation,” said WWU Director of Athletics Steve Card. “We have had wonderful success in all of our sports, but to see these students receive their diploma through hard work and dedication is truly what the student-athlete experience is all about.”
The ceremony marks the first time the Carver Academic Facility will be open since renovation work began in August 2015. Only the gymnasium portion of the building will be open only to the graduates and their ticketed guests, along with authorized WWU staff. Once the ceremony is complete, the building will close to the public so work can continue. Carver is expected to be completed in time for the start of fall quarter in late September. More information on the commencement ceremonies can be found on WWU.edu.
2016-17 Graduating WWU Student-Athletes:
- Rachel Albert (Women’s Basketball)
- Emily Bartlett (Rowing)
- Bethany Drake (Track & Field)
- Kiana Gandy (Women’s Basketball)
- Brittany Grant (Cross Country and Track & Field)
- Mary Harper (Rowing)
- Aleisha Hathaway (Women’s Basketball)
- Jacob Hino (Track & Field)
- Mackenzie Hughes (Softball)
- Caitlyn Jobanek (Women’s Soccer)
- Brett Johnson (Men’s Golf)
- Gordie Kordas (Track & Field)
- Bryce Larson (Volleyball)
- Sofia Marikis (Cross Country and Track & Field)
- Cody McCranie (Cross Country and Track & Field)
- Jasmine McMullin (Track & Field)
- Miranda Osadchey (Track & Field)
- Kia Parrish-Haim (Rowing)
- Kali Patterson (Softball)
- Taylor Peacocke (Women’s Basketball)
- Max Romey (Cross Country and Track & Field)
- Mark Seely (Track & Field)
- Taylor Stafford (Men’s Basketball)
- Sara Taferre (Cross Country and Track & Field)
- Shawna Troupe (Cross Country and Track & Field)
- Katie Tyburczy (Cross Country and Track & Field)
- Brady Ulen (Men’s Soccer)
- Nicole Vanderzanden (Rowing)
- Molly Ware (Rowing)
- Kevin Yates (Track & Field)
Participated in Earlier Graduation Ceremonies:
- Matthew Lutz (Cross Country & Track & Field)
- Anthony Allen (Men’s Golf)
- Travis Milbrandt (Track & Field)
- Elise Aylward (Women’s Soccer)
- Becca Cates (Women’s Soccer)
- Rachel Ivancic (Track & Field)
- Veronica Ivancic (Track & Field)
- Katelyn Wright (Track & Field)
- Cory Johnson (Cross Country)
- John Haskin (Track & Field)
No. 8 Vikings Dominate Road Match at Simon Fraser
Vikings out-block SFU 16-1 in dominating 25-9, 25-19, 25-16 road victory
Women's Hoops Opens Exhibition Play Sunday
Vikings host Trinity Western at 12:30 pm Sunday on WECU Court at Carver Gym
Blue-White Game Saturday Opens Men's Hoops...
The annual Blue-White scrimmage is set for Saturday at 5 pm on WECU Court at Carver Gym
Vikings Travel to Face Saint Martin's on Thursday
WWU (6-3-3, 5-1-1 GNAC) begins a stretch of four consecutive road contests this week
Men's Golf Finishes 11th at Otter Invitational
Adam Barker ties for 7th place in 104-player field at 1-under-par 215
Vikings in 10th at Otter Invitational With Play...
Second round of 36-hole first day of tournament suspended due to darkness and will resume Tuesday
No. 8 Vikings Return to Road in GNAC Action
WWU takes 15-3 record into road contests at Simon Fraser and Montana State Billings
WWU Edged 1-0 on Golden Goal in Double OT by SFU
Simon Fraser scores in 109th minute as Vikings suffer first defeat since Sept. 2
No. 11 Vikings Continue Winning Ways with Sweep...
Vikings win eighth consecutive match to finish first half of GNAC play with 9-1 record to tie for...
WWU Shuts Out MSU Billings 2-0, Extends...
Vikings score in 81st and 90th minutes, extend unbeaten streak to nine games
Volleyball Sweeps Saint Martin's to Extend...
WWU wins seventh straight to improve to 14-3 overall and move into tie for 1st place in GNAC with...
Vikings Remain Undefeated with 3-0 win at Simon...
WWU improves to 12-0-0 overall and 8-0-0 in GNAC play with fifth straight shutout
No. 11 Volleyball Returns Home To Host SMU and SPU
Vikings take six-match winning streak into pair of GNAC matches at Carver Gym
WWU to Host MSU Billings, No. 16 Simon Fraser
Vikings (4-0-1 GNAC) look to continue strong start to conference schedule at home
No. 3 Vikings Remain Perfect with 4-0 Win Over ...
Vikings record 8th shutout of the season to improve to 11-0-0 on the season