Reinhardt Named NAIA Champions of Character Five-Star Bronze Institution

NAIA Bronze Champions of Character logoReinhardt University Named NAIA Champions of Character Five-Star Bronze Institution for 2014-15

Reinhardt University has been named a 2014-2015 Champions of Character Five-Star Bronze Institution by the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics, NAIA. The designation is given to schools who reach a certain threshold on the NAIA Champions of Character scorecard, which addresses the five core values of integrity, respect, responsibility, sportsmanship and servant leadership.

“We are very excited to again earn Five-Star recognition from the NAIA,” said RU Director of Athletics Bill Popp. “This award is really a tribute to our coaches and student-athletes who play on the field and work off the field by the NAIA’s ‘Live 5’ characteristics for life.”

Reinhardt’s 2014-2015 Champions of Character activities included:

  • Two character breakfasts, which featured staff members who shared character-building experiences from their lives; these events were initiated by University Chaplain the Rev. Jordan Thrasher
  • Preseason education session for all head coaches held by Faculty Athletic Representative/Faculty Athletic Committee
  • A drug and alcohol awareness speech which addressed life consequences
  • Preseason discussion of expectations with each team by the athletic director
  • Character message delivered at all youth athletic camps
  • Cherokee Youth Baseball and Youth Basketball Days held at Reinhardt
  • Breast Cancer awareness events including Dig Pink Volleyball match and Save 2nd base softball games
  • Participation in a fund raiser organized by one of Reinhardt’s business classes and a student organization D.R.E.A.M.S. to support Imagine No Malaria, a project of the United Methodist Church  
The winter Imagine No Malaria Half-time Shoot-out successfully raised funds for Imagine No Malaria, a disease prevention effort started by the United Methodist Church.
The Half-time Shoot-out during the men’s basketball game on Feb. 4, 2015, successfully raised funds for Imagine No Malaria, a disease prevention effort started by the United Methodist Church. This effort was one of many which addressed the NAIA’s five core values of integrity, respect, responsibility, sportsmanship and servant leadership.

2015-2016 Champions of Character activities include:

  • Character Breakfasts
  • Preseason education session for all head coaches hosted by the Faculty Athletic Representative/Faculty Athletic Committee – speaker to be Tiana Tozer
  • Partnership with R.M. Moore Elementary School
  • Women’s soccer team support for the University’s Year of Mexico
  • Cherokee Youth Football Day at Reinhardt
  • Many more activities will be added as each team will do at least one service project

More about the five-star Champions of Character designation

Out of 236 NAIA schools, 169 institutions and 20 conferences (including RU’s home conferences of the Appalachian Athletic Conference, AAC, and the Mid-South Conference) earned five-star designation.  

As the NAIA states, “Institutions are measured on a demonstrated commitment to Champions of Character and earned points in character training, conduct in competition, academic focus, character recognition and character promotion. Institutions earned points based on exceptional student-athlete grade point averages and by having minimal to no ejections during competition throughout the course of the academic year.”

In the notification to the university, Kristin Knopik Gillette, the NAIA Champions of Character director, said, “The Champions of Character program continues to grow and impact people throughout our nation as a result of the passion and commitment of NAIA member institutions such as yours. We trust that you will continue to spread the Champions of Character message over the coming year.”  

In all, 10 AAC schools earned Five-Star recognition from the NAIA.