It was another record-setting performance for UNH’s student-athletes — this time in the classroom. Boasting a grade point average for the year of 3.31, UNH won the 2016–17 America East Walter Harrison Academic Cup, a measure of student-athlete academic success among colleges that compete in the America East Athletic Conference. The 3.31 GPA represents a new high-water mark for the 22-year-old award, which the Wildcats claimed for the third consecutive year and the fifth time overall.
UNH shared first-place honors with the University of Hartford, topping its own previous Academic Cup-best GPA of 3.23 from both 2015–16 and 2014–15 in the process. In addition to the schoolwide title, four UNH teams took home sport-specific highest GPA awards: men’s indoor track and field (the team’s third consecutive title), men’s outdoor track and field, men’s cross country and women’s lacrosse.
The Wildcats’ notable outstanding academic achievements in 2016–17 included three America East Scholar-Athlete of the Year awards — two for running standout Elinor Purrier ’18, who received both the women’s cross country and women’s indoor track and field accolades, and one for soccer midfielder Chris Wingate ’16, who claimed the men’s soccer award. In addition, six newly graduated ’Cats were named America East Presidential Scholar-Athletes for completing their undergraduate degrees with a cumulative GPA of 3.75 or higher, including Mimi Borkan and Caitlin Bucksbaum of women’s soccer, Mitchell Dutton of men’s cross country and track and field, Riley Ellis of men’s soccer, Amy LeBel of women’s lacrosse and Alyson Messina of women’s cross country and track and field.
Originally published in UNH Magazine Fall 2017 Issue