Each year, the NCAA evaluates all division I teams and selects teams from schools for various academic awards. This year, eight of Loyola’s 13 Division I sport teams received NCAA’s Academic Progress Rate (ARP) awards.
The APR awards were instituted in 2003, and the NCAA gives the awards to the top 10 percent of academic achieving teams in their respective sport. The idea behind the award is to display the academic achievements and efforts among Division I team.
“The Academic Progress Rate (APR) holds institutions accountable for the academic progress of their student-athletes through a team-based metric that accounts for the eligibility and retention of each student-athlete for each academic term,” said NCAA.com
On April 13, the 2015-16 APR awards were published and Loyola received eight. These eight teams were women’s golf, women’s soccer, women’s softball, women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s cross country, and men’s and women’s track and field. Last May, 11 Rambler teams received perfect APR scores, according to Loyola’s Athletic Department.
The eight awards Loyola received is the most of any Division I school in the Missouri Valley Conference. Loyola received the second most awards among Jesuit universities in the U.S., behind Gonzaga University.
Senior Academic Advisor Patricia Hoffman said she takes pride in Loyola’s student-athletes drive for academic achievement.
“Academic advisors build strong relationships with student-athletes,” said Hoffman in a statement released by Loyola’s athletic department. “[They] formulate a four-year plan that integrates with their respective sport commitments so that they stay on course semester-to-semester and year-to-year with manageable course loads.”
Loyola’s women’s soccer head coach Barry Bimbi said it’s rewarding as a coach when his athletes receive prestigious awards.
“Player retention is important and we want our girls graduating,” said Bimbi.
Bimbi also said this award helps with player recruitment. By prospective players and their families being able to see the strong retention rate in the program and the award they received for it, prospective players and their families are drawn to the program.
Hoffman attributed the success of the program to the support the department provides for each student athlete.
“At the end of the day, we provide the resources for success but the student athletes are the ones who challenge themselves each and every day to be the best they can be in competition and in the classroom.”
The full APR numbers are expected to be released April 20.