NEW HAVEN, Conn. - - In a vote of the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, Wilmington University Faculty Athletics Representative (FAR) Dr. Matt Wilson earned the conference's nomination for the 2020 NCAA Division II Dr. Dave Pariser Faculty Mentor Award.
The award, named after a Bellarmine physical therapy professor who died in 2013, honors an institutional faculty member who has demonstrated dedication, support, and guidance to student-athletes and the institution's athletics program. Division II sets forth a strong commitment to prepare student-athletes to excel in their endeavors after their athletics careers have ended. The nominee should demonstrate exemplary support to student-athletes both on and off the field/court of competition while representing the NCAA Division II core values of learning, passion, service, resourcefulness, sportsmanship and balance. This support can include, but is not limited to, athletics, academics, life skills, career development or other areas.
Nominated by the Wildcats' Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) Vice President Kiersten Comer, Dr. Wilson Exemplifies the core NCAA values by his involvement with the school, athletics, and multiple charity organizations.
As part of her nomination, Comer writes "During his time at Wilmington University, he has served on a variety of committees including Chair of the Faculty Senate's policy committee, curriculum committee, and the Middle States Accreditation Self-Study Steering Committee. Recently, Dr. Wilson completed two terms as the Vice-Chair of Faculty Senate and then two terms as the Chair of Faculty Senate. Outside of his employment, he volunteers in a variety of areas locally and nationally. Currently, Matt is the Chair of the National Volunteer Advisory Council of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. After battling pancreatic cancer himself in 2011, he became inspired to give back to those who were experiencing the same troubles as well as their families. He also serves as a board member of Leadership Delaware. One of Matt's biggest passions is service work which includes building projects in Mexico, volunteering at food banks and homeless shelters, and extensive disaster relief work with clean up and rebuilding in the Gulf Coast and New Jersey/New York."
On campus, Dr. Wilson has played a key role in bridging the gap between athletics and the university. He helps host the Annual Green and White Gala as well as multiple faculty luncheons, both in which student-athletes are invited to be a part of and speak to keep the faculty abreast as to how the athletics department is doing. He also helped orchestrate the 2019 NCAA DII Softball East Regional Tournament which was hosted by the Wildcats on the New Castle campus.
The national Division II Student-Athlete Advisory Committee has selected Joan Davison of Rollins as the winner of the 2020 Dr. Dave Pariser Faculty Mentor Award. With the 2021 NCAA Convention being held virtually, Davison will receive the award at the Division II Faculty Mentor Award Presentation and Reception during the 2022 NCAA Convention in Indianapolis.