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Athletic director touts students' achievements

          Ohio University’s athletics director defended the department and its participants at the Board of Trustees’ Academics Committee meeting yesterday, citing good overall grade-point averages and community service.

          Jim Schaus, director of Intercollegiate Athletics, pointed out that student athletes’ overall graduation rate is “comparable with that of the general student population” and that the average cumulative grade point average for student athletes last academic year was 3.09. Additionally, 260 student athletes made the dean’s list and 24 earned a 4.0 cumulative grade point average last school year.

          Student athletes also must take at least six credit hours per quarter than can count toward their degrees, according to the presentation.

“Sometimes there is that perception that they’re just taking classes that don’t matter … but they have to be working toward a degree with the classes they take,” Schaus said.

          Schaus also highlighted some noted OU Athletics alumni, some of whom have gone on to become CEOs and presidents of companies.

          Student athletes also participate in community service — some volunteer at food banks, help students move in at the beginning of the school year and volunteer at skills camps for elementary-aged children.

          “It is a very important part of their education and a great way for us to give back to the community,” Schaus said.

          Intercollegiate Athletics has faced scrutiny this year from some students and faculty members at OU who argue that the program is over-funded.


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