Friends University Men’s Basketball Player Jacob Simmonds has been selected as one of only 14 National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) student athletes nationwide to participate in the 2012-2013 Red Cross/NAIA Collegiate Leadership Program.
Simmonds, a sophomore from Peabody, Kan., is majoring in health science. He has made the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll all three semesters while at Friends University and currently holds a 3.97 grade point average. Simmonds has volunteered at the University’s Salvation Army Day and is active in his church community.
The Red Cross/NAIA initiative is now in its sixth year and is designed to inspire, motivate and create a new and diverse generation of American Red Cross volunteers and leaders through exemplifying the five core values of the NAIA Champions of Character Program.
“I am very excited for Jacob. This will be a great opportunity for him,” said Head Men’s Basketball Coach Dale Faber. “Jacob excels on the court and in the classroom and sets a great example for his teammates.”
The leadership program kicks off with two weeks of energetic training at the Red Cross National Headquarters located in Washington, D.C. from June 4 to June 15. The incoming class will participate in a rare and unique opportunity to acquire first-hand coaching, mentoring and professional leadership training presented by the Red Cross, one of the nation’s largest non-profit organizations.
Student-athletes will learn from civic and business leaders how to uncover their leadership potential off the field. The participants will organize successful campus blood drives, actively participate on a leadership board, and take part in diversity and cultural competency training. For their efforts, students will receive scholarship support by the Red Cross and State Farm Insurance.
“I am very honored to receive an opportunity like this,” Simmonds said. “I look forward to furthering my leadership skills that will help me on and off the court at Friends University.”