KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Purdue University Calumet had a school-record five athletic programs earn recognition from the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics, as the organization announced its total of 898 teams qualifying for the Scholar Team Award. The Peregrines' women's basketball, women's cross country, women's soccer and men's and women's tennis teams all received the prestigious honor.
"We are very proud of the academic and athletic success our programs had this past year," said Director of Athletics Rick Costello. "We strive for excellence every day and this honor is a true testament to the efforts put forth by our student-athletes and coaching staff."
Purdue Calumet's women's cross country program, under the direction of head coach Matt Bliss, led the way for the Black and Gold with a 3.44 cumulative grade-point average. Women’s tennis compiled a 3.27 GPA, while men’s tennis (3.24), women’s basketball (3.16) and women’s soccer (3.09) rounded out the honorees for the Peregrines.
To receive the honor each program must have a minimum 3.0 grade-point average (on a 4.0 scale) as defined by the institution. The team's cumulative grade-point average includes not only official letterwinners, but also individuals in the program who have been certified as eligible.
The Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference had a total of 61 teams accomplish the feat, as Olivet Nazarene led both the NAIA and the league with 19. Purdue Calumet was one of only three schools in the conference who sponsor 10 or more sports to have at least 50 percent of their programs receive the honor.
The NAIA is the governing body for athletics programs at its nearly 300 colleges and universities throughout the United States and Canada. The long-held mission of the NAIA is to promote the education and development of well-rounded students and productive citizens through intercollegiate athletics. The association offers equitable access and opportunities for participation in its 23 national championship events held annually throughout the country.