The NCAA and Small Liberal Arts Colleges – The Oracle


As Minnesota’s premier university, it seems fitting that despite the school’s size, both Hamline’s president and athletic director hold senior positions within the National Collegiate Athletic Association.

The conundrum that is the NCAA continues to create resolutions and announce nominations seems, and for most students at Hamline University, all to become white noise. While the world of sport was once again able to compete in a semi-normal environment, most people listened to what the association did. However, Hamline students should pay more attention to the NCAA than ever before.

Hamline President Faynesse Miller has assumed the role of Chair of the Division III Presidents Council and will hold that position until voting sessions in January. In this role, President Miller is responsible for facilitating meetings, assisting in passing resolutions, and helping to establish committees within the NCAA.

President Miller also sits on the Constitution Committee, of which she was selected and voted by the Board of Governors to serve on it in August. This committee includes representatives from the three divisions of collegiate athletics and will participate in the rewrite of the NCAA constitution.

“The Special Constitutional Convention is intended to propose dramatic changes to the NCAA constitution to reinvent aspects of college sport, so that the Association can more effectively meet the needs of current and future college athletes,” the website said. of the NCAA during the Constitution Committee’s announcement. .

After a year and a half of dramatic and intense changes in the world of sports, the association believes that an overhaul is overdue and the president of Hamline will participate in the overhaul of the world of varsity sport for the foreseeable future.

In addition to President Miller’s involvement with the NCAA, Hamline associate vice president and sports director Jason Verdugo also sits on a few boards.

He is involved with the NCAA pathway program as a “senior consultant for the DIII cohort,” Verdugo said. This program helps train and prepare potential athletic directors to be ready for leadership roles in varsity sport, and Verdugo is the Head of the Division III section of the program.

Beyond that, Verdugo is a consultant for the Diversity and Inclusion Working Group, which helps foster environments for athletes that promote tolerance for diversity in the world of college athletics. This group is very important to the success of the NCAA’s ability to ensure the safety and comfort of college athletes when they compete and participate. Verdugo is able to represent Hamline in this working group and in April 2020 Hamline was highlighted by this committee for a student leadership workshop held in the sports community.

Verdugo is also a member of the student immersion program and serves as a mentor for the program and for the athlete selection process. This program serves as a resource for ethnic minority athletes interested in Division III athletics and a few Hamline student-athletes have participated in this program.

Verdugo and President Miller have both made a huge impact in college sports through their involvement with the NCAA and there are a lot more changes to be made on the horizon.


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