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Student-Athlete Affairs

The NCAA and the Division I-A Athletic Directors Association help prepare student-athletes for the challenges of life beyond the playing field developed the Student-Athlete Affairs program. Through workshops, information and interactive seminars, service projects and social events, the program enhances the quality of the student-athlete experience within the university setting, as well as provides WCU student-athletes information that will prepare them for life after college. The Student-Athlete Affairs program is designed to reach each student-athlete's needs. The Student-Athlete Affairs program focuses on the individual as a whole: academically, athletically, and personally, in the five different commitment areas. It also focuses on the changing needs and skills needed in the years during and after college.

THE MAJOR COMPONENTS OF THE PROGRAM
The Student-Athlete Affairs program embraces five components for enhancement of the student-athlete experience at Western Carolina University:

COMMITMENT TO ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE
• To support the academic progress of the student-athlete toward intellectual development and graduation
• To ensure that each student-athlete will have the opportunity to excel in his/her chosen field of study
• To encourage student-athletes to become fully integrated into all programs and services provided by the university
• To work closely with the academic advisors to support student-athletes and provide support as they pursue their educational goals and facilitate academic success

COMMITMENT TO ATHLETIC EXCELLENCE
• To ensure that each student-athlete will be provided facilities, coaching staff, administration and support services that will enable them to excel in a broad program of sports sponsored by Western Carolina
• To ensure the programs are based on fundamental principles with a commitment to sportsmanship, equity, fair play, integrity and in compliance with the rules of the University, conference and the NCAA and dedicated to the well-being of the student-athlete

COMMITMENT TO PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT
• To ensure that each student-athlete participating in Student-Athlete Affairs program will be provided with opportunities to focus on personal growth issues such as value clarification, goal setting, leadership skills, decision-making skills and fiscal responsibilities
• Coaches and student-athletes have the opportunity to select special seminars and workshops facilitated by professionals with expertise in these areas
• Each component will be focused toward developing a healthy well-balanced lifestyle and give opportunities to discuss issues relative to the personal and professional development
• Student-athletes assume leadership positions through the Student-Athlete Advisory Council

COMMITMENT TO COMMUNITY SERVICE
• To challenge student-athletes to give back to his/her campus, the surrounding community and to individuals who are in need with a clearly defined program of service
• To involve student-athletes in projects to practice and enhance their interpersonal skills, develop a stronger sense of belonging and increase their self-esteem
• Student-athletes will be given opportunities to develop the foundation for a long commitment of volunteerism

COMMITMENT TO CAREER DEVELOPMENT
• To place a priority on preparing for life after intercollegiate sports and acquaint student-athletes with the job search process; provide networking opportunities, and ultimately assists with job placement
• Emphasize the need for goal setting and the systematic pursuit of a career path, which includes career advising, career direction, and evaluation of career options
• Presents a year-by-year approach that will assist in the student-athlete's "career game plan"
• Career Services on campus encourages students to develop and pursue career and life goals. Other services include: career interest inventory, career/professional day, internship/summer jobs, resume writing, cover letter writing, mock interviews, professional mentor's network and career networking

The Student-Athlete Affairs program at Western Carolina will consist of orientations, workshops, speakers, and community service activities. The Department of Athletics and your coach will require some of these; others will be available to you on an optional basis.

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