BABSON PARK, Mass.—The Babson College Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) entered the 2019-20 academic year with a revised structure and mission, as the leadership group's makeover began during last January's APPLE Training Institute.
The event, which has had Babson representation the last two years due to its three-year, $30,000 NCAA CHOICES grant, is an annual three-day national training institute for student-athletes, athletics administrators and campus partners dedicated to substance abuse prevention and health promotion of college student-athletes. Babson's group chose to focus on revamping SAAC.
Babson SAAC is a committee made up of student-athletes dedicated to protecting student-athlete welfare, fostering a positive image of the athletics community, and providing leadership opportunities beyond their sport. The goal is to have two members from each varsity program and six at-large candidates for a total of 50 members.
"Developing a leadership group among our student-athletes has been a goal of ours for some time," said Pamela P. and Brian M. Barefoot Senior Director of Athletics and Athletics Advancement Mike Lynch. "Under the direction of Shannon Torosian, this group is comprised of some very committed members of our teams who see the bigger picture of who we are and what we are about at Babson—excellence not only on the fields and in the classroom, but the broader community as well. They are doing meaningful work in our department, and I'm excited to see this transformation unfold in the coming months and years."
Baseball senior Sean Harrington (Walpole, Mass.) and softball classmate Katie Gademsky (Hillsborough, N.J.) will serve as co-presidents. Joining them on the executive board are baseball junior Alex Luka (Downers Grove, Ill.), field hockey seniors Kate Driscoll (Milton, Mass.) and Haley Pesce (Roxbury, Conn.), women's soccer sophomore Kayla Salmon (Arlington, Va.) and women's volleyball senior Kristin Carosotto (East Greenwich, R.I.).
Member benefits are opportunities for training, professional development and letters of recommendation, the chance to attend the APPLE Training Institute, and to contribute to meaningful change and a culture of care community. Recognition as a leader among not only their own team but also the athletics community, and a supportive social environment, are also included.
Student-athletes serving on SAAC must demonstrate the six core values of leadership, trust, integrity, service, compassion and influence.
They also are required to serve on one of four subcommittees, which are diversity & inclusion, health & wellness, community service and community engagement. Each of the subcommittees will have an athletics staff liaison to help lead the group while serving as a resource.
Diversity & inclusion is a group tasked with spearheading initiatives or educational opportunities that promote diversity and inclusion among student-athletes, while health & wellness examines factors that influence the health and well-being of student-athletes, and advocates for change in policy, practice or access.
Community service determines opportunities available to varsity teams, and community engagement fosters relationships and develops collaborative events with non-athletics communities at Babson.