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Aug. 15, 2014
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. (August 15, 2014) – The Penn State Department of Intercollegiate Athletics is coming off a year of near unprecedented success, both in the classroom and competition. To continue support for over 800 student-athletes’ academic aspirations, the department will begin providing them with iPads this fall, Dr. David Joyner, Penn State’s Director of Athletics, announced Friday.
The Intercollegiate Athletics Technology Program is designed to provide the student-athletes of Penn State with continuous and evolving access to resources that heighten their efficiency, productivity and connectivity as they seek to achieve high standards of academic and athletic excellence.
“The iPad program will add to the expansive range of support services we provide student-athletes at Penn State,” Joyner said. “We believe the academic benefits, technological opportunities and improved accessibility will enrich the student-athlete experience.”
Academically, a total of 285 PSU student-athletes earned Academic All-Big Ten accolades in 2013-14, the Nittany Lions' second-highest total in their 21 years as Big Ten members. An all-time high 461 Penn State student-athletes earned a grade-point average of 3.0 or higher during the spring semester with 205 of them earning Dean’s List recognition.
Anchored by three NCAA Championships and a school record-tying eight Big Ten titles, Penn State earned its first Top 5 finish in the in the Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup standings in 11 years, earning a school-record point total for the second-consecutive year.
“The program will provide all student-athletes with an important tool they need to excel academically,” Linda Caldwell, Penn State’s faculty athletics representative, said. “With an equal technology base, all 800-plus students-athletes have an even base for success.”
Joyner and Caldwell also said the initiative will expand current support programs available to Penn State student-athletes, including:
- Enhancing learning through digital technology including e-textbooks, digital course materials and online course programming
- Increasing time management and study skills through apps specifically designed to help students manage hectic schedules and workloads
- Improving connectivity and communication to interact with faculty members and classmates, as well as with Morgan Center advising staff
- Providing more efficient access team-related material (e.g., playbooks, video, and compliance forms), giving them more time to be students first and attend to their academic life
- Increasing familiarity with the latest technology to prepare for life in the workplace after graduation
The initiative is a collaborative effort between the administrative and operating budgets for all 31 sports, the student-athlete opportunity fund and the Morgan Academic Support Center. All student-athletes will complete an orientation upon receipt of their iPad, including instruction on policies and usage guidelines.
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