JONESBORO (AStateRedWolves.com) – The Arkansas State Department of Athletics held its annual Student-Athlete Senior Ring Ceremony at the Carl R. Reng Student Union on the ASU campus Tuesday night, honoring its senior student-athletes and announcing its major award winners for the 2011-12 year.
A-State recognized its senior student-athletes for their athletic and academic achievements during their time at ASU, issuing their senior rings in front of their teammates after they were honored individually by members of the coaching staffs. A reception for the seniors was held prior to the event, which included introductory comments from director of athletics Dr. Dean Lee and a highlight video celebrating the Red Wolves' most recent accomplishments.
"What a wonderful group of seniors," said ASU Associate Athletic Director for Student Services Stacey Willmott. "It's been a privilege to share this senior year with them. They have represented their teams, our department and the University with great character and talent."
The night concluded with the announcement of the Terry Gwin Award and the Scott and Kay Dawson Ambassador Award, two of the most prestigious honors an ASU student-athlete can receive.
Senior volleyball player Cayla Fielder and senior baseball player Jacob Lee were named the recipients of the Terry Gwin Award, named after former football player Terry Gwin and based on leadership, citizenship, scholarship and athletic performance.
The Scott and Kay Dawson Ambassador Award winners were men's basketball player Trey Finn and women's basketball player NeNe Hurst. The criteria for the award includes but is not limited to excellence in service, attitude, integrity, loyalty, character and leadership.
ASU student-athletes nominated for Sun Belt Conference awards were honored at the ceremony as well. Football player Ryan Aplin and women's track and field performer Sharika Nelvis are nominated for the Sun Belt Conference Student-Athlete of the Year. Lee and and women's soccer player Stasha Siers are nominated for the SBC Postgraduate Scholarship Award. Volleyball player Kelsie Hodges and football player Brandon Joiner are ASU's institutional nominees for the Sun Belt Conference Sporting Behavior Award.
The H.T. "Pug" Winters Degree Completion Award went to Anthony Hecht (baseball) and Jennifer Welch (women's golf), and the Billie Gene Davidson Degree Completion Award went to Whitney Nilson (volleyball) and Chris Pledger (men's golf).