Senate gets update on student-athlete academics

In his annual report to the Faculty Senate on Sept. 9, faculty athletics representative Tim Day said the 2013 student-athlete academic data show "no concerns" about ISU's compliance with the NCAA's academic progress rate (APR).

The APR measures retention and eligibility of student-athletes. All of the Cyclone teams were above the 2013-14 required minimum (900) and the benchmark (930) set for 2014-15. The women's cross country team scored a perfect 1,000, with five more squads at or above 990. Football and men's basketball shared the lowest score (948) among the 18 teams.

Day showed that the cumulative grade point average of all ISU student-athletes was slightly lower than the general student body in the spring (2.91/2.99) and fall (2.88/2.97) semesters of 2013.

"For the most part, the student-athlete academic performance really mirrors and tracks right along with that of the general student population," Day said.

Day also gave senators a look at NCAA changes and issues on the horizon, including:

  • Legislative autonomy granted to five conferences, including the Big 12
  • Cost of attendance models for student-athletes
  • Decisions in the O'Bannon antitrust case, including the use of student-athlete names and likenesses

Other business

  • Senators were introduced to a proposed minor in leadership studies (PDF), which will be voted on next month. The 15-credit, interdisciplinary program would be coordinated by the Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
  • Senior vice president and provost Jonathan Wickert said a record 105 tenured/tenure-eligible faculty were hired last year and another strong recruiting cycle is under way.
  • Wickert said ISU introduced a proposed student innovation center to the state Board of Regents facilities committee. The center would be a collaboration between the Engineering and Design colleges, benefitting 14 programs. The center would focus on design, manufacturing and prototyping activities and be constructed on the former Sweeney and Nuclear Engineering sites.