PISCATAWAY, NJ - Senior Lauren Sisler (Newport, VA), a co-captain and standout member of the Rutgers gymnastics team, has been recognized by the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics (N4A) with the 2006 Wilma Rudolph Student Athlete Achievement Award. Sisler will be honored at the N4A Awards Banquet to be held on Sunday, June 25, in Pittsburgh, PA.
The N4A Wilma Rudolph Student Athlete Achievement Award is intended to honor student athletes who have overcome great personal, and/or emotional odds, to achieve academic success while participating in intercollegiate athletics.
Sisler suffered the unfortunate tragedy of losing both her parents within hours of each other in her freshman year. She persevered through such trying times to excel both academically and athletically at Rutgers University, raising her grade point average more than a point and a half, and emerging as one of the gymnastics team’s top performers.
In the 2005-06 season, Sisler competed in all but one meet on the uneven bars and floor exercise, averaging a 9.431 and 9.581, respectively. At the team’s annual awards banquet held in April, she was presented with the Noble Award, which recognizes the gymnast who displays outstanding athletic ability, consistency, sportsmanship and dedication to the team. Voted a team captain by her teammates this season, she has displayed excellent leadership qualities and has been an inspiration to those around her.
A past recipient of the team’s Most Improved Gymnast Award, Sisler is also a two-time East Atlantic Gymnastics League (EAGL) All-Academic Team selection and National Association of Collegiate Gymnastics Coaches for Women Academic All-American.
“This traumatic experience that life has dealt me hasn’t been easy and isn't free from pain,” said Sisler. “But this experience has been life changing for me in many ways that are beyond words. When I say life changing, I refer to it now in positive light. I have been able to take everything my parents taught me in the first eighteen years of my life and apply it to what I live and stand for.”
Sisler, who graduated in May with a B.A. in Communication and honors from the School of Communication, Information and Library Studies (SCILS), plans to pursue a career in sports broadcasting.
Sisler became the second Rutgers student-athlete to win the N4A’s Wilma Rudolph Award. Quyen Tran, a four-year letterwinner (1997-2000) on the Scarlet Knights’ softball team, was the recipient of the award in 2000.