Athletes for a Better World (ABW) and The National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (NIAAA) have formed a partnership to annually recognize one male and one female national NIAAA scholarship winner as automatic recipients of the prestigious Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup. These two high school athletes will join one collegiate winner and a professional recipient each year as exemplary role models of the ABW Code for Living. The recipients of the high school class of 2017 are Hope Baldwin and Ethan Shuster who will receive the Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup on April 25, 2018 at the Atlanta banquet. ABW Executive Director Brad Catherman and NIAAA Executive Director Mike Blackburn celebrated this achievement with the two recipients at the Opening General Session of the National Athletic Directors Conference conducted December 8, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona
The NIAAA Student Scholarship/Essay competition recognizes distinguished high school student athletes in the attribute areas of scholastics, leadership, citizenship, participation, volunteerism and the importance of school sports participation in the student’s life. The ABW Code for Living criteria have been incorporated into the scholarship application by asking applicants to reflect upon the tenets of life lessons learned through sport and how they relate and impact their life. The ABW book entitled Winning More Than the Game challenges readers to consider the Code for Living via exercises, as a springboard for life qualities of character development
Following are profiles of the two recipients:
Hope Vera Baldwin – Hackett Catholic Prep High School, Kalamazoo, Michigan
Hope’s parents are mother, Suzann Hartzell Baldwin, and the late Roger Baldwin. Hope graduated from Hackett Catholic Prep High School, Kalamazoo, Michigan, with a grade point average of 4.00. She is attending the University of Notre Dame studying Neuroscience. The Athletic Director at Hackett Catholic Prep High School is Mike Garvey, CMAA. Hope earned nine varsity letters in her high school career, playing the sports of volleyball, basketball and soccer. She served as captain of the volleyball and basketball teams during her senior season. Hope was very active in her school as
Vice-president of her senior class and the National Honor Society. She also was involved in the student leadership team and student athletic advisory board. In the community, Hope was a volunteer working with Migrant Ministry, Kalamazoo Valley Children’s Museum and she worked as a volunteer for the United States Tennis Association Nationals at the Zoo. She participated in Caring Network and the American Cancer Discovery Shop.
Ethan Shuster – Shelton High School, Shelton, Connecticut
Ethan is the son of Barb and Keith Shuster. He graduated with a grade point average of 96.8% weighted on a scale of 100%. Ethan is attending University of Connecticut, studying pre-med, and plans to be an anesthesiologist. The athletic director at Shelton High School is John Niski. Ethan earned eight varsity letters participating in soccer and indoor and outdoor track and field, while serving as captain of his track teams. He was honored as a Wendy’s Heisman State Finalist. Ethan was a member of National Honor Society and volunteered in the Annual blood drive, while participating in Junior State of America that helped prepare him for government issues within his community and state. Ethan’s community activities included volunteering at Norwalk Hospital, where he served over 275 hours in the areas of operating room orderly, post anesthesia care unit, ambulatory care and transporting patients in and out of surgery and the pathology department.
The Scholarship Competition: Students from 50 state athletic administrator associations, plus the District of Columbia, were able to submit a nomination form and essay. The male and female winners were then screened by one of the eight Sections in which their state resides, creating eight male and eight female Section winners. The NIAAA Board of Directors then evaluated the finalist’s scholastic record, athletic participation accomplishments, citizenship and leadership credentials on its way to selecting one male and one female national recipient. Both recipients were on hand in Phoenix to receive their national scholarship of $2500, a personal trophy, a plaque for their high school and to read their winner essay entitled How High School Athletics Have Impacted My Life. The total scholarship earned by the two national recipients was $4000.
About the NIAAA: The NIAAA is based in Indianapolis, Indiana, and is the national leadership organization for high school and middle school athletic administrators. With current individual membership of over 10,000 the NIAAA consists of athletic administrators from associations in the 50 states, the District of Columbia and Internationally. The NIAAA leads in providing professional development for athletic administrators, serving as a resource and provider of safe and plentiful participation opportunities for the nation’s 7.9 million student-athletes. With conducting education-based athletic programs as the focus, NIAAA membership provides opportunity for professional development, education, certification, national award recognition and exchange of ideas with athletic administrators throughout the world.