SEC Names 2022 Swimming & Diving Community Service Teams

by SwimSwam 1

February 15th, 2022 College, News, SEC

Courtesy: SEC Sports

Women’s Release

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (February 15, 2022)- The SEC sponsors Community Service Teams for all 21 league sponsored sports. The Community Service Team looks to highlight an athlete from each school who gives back to their community in superior service efforts. The 2022 SEC Women’s Swimming & Diving Community Service Team is as follows:

Ashley Voelkerding, Senior, Alabama

A Scholar All-American, school record holder, SEC scorer and member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll, Voelkerding has worked extensively in the community during her Crimson Tide tenure. She has given her time to the Alberta Head Start reading initiative, the Crimson Tide’s Halloween Extravaganza, working with children at the Belk Activity Center, the Lee County Tornado Relief efforts, A Night to Shine and Project Angel Tree. Voelkerding graduated from Alabama in December 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in public health and is currently finishing her MBA as part of UA’s Stem to MBA program.

Reilly Shaner, Junior, Arkansas

Shaner has been a part of the Grateful Razorback Letter Writing. She has also participated in the First Responder Goodie Bags. In addition, Shaner has been a part of the Choose Confidence video and also was a part of the Potter’s House Community Engagement. She volunteered in the Shop with the Razorbacks Money donation.

Mykenzie Leehy, Fifth-Year Senior, Auburn

Leehy is a graduate transfer from Houston where she swam the previous four seasons. While in Houston, she helped put on holiday events for kids at M.D. Anderson Hospital. Leehy walked dogs and cleaned kennels for Houston Pets Alive. She also worked with the Houston Food Band where she created lunch bags for kids to have lunches. Since coming to Auburn, Leehy has given her time to help instruct swimmers as a part of the Special Olympics Swimming program at the Opelika Sportsplex. She also previously served as a meal site volunteer back in her hometown of Council Bluffs, Iowa.

Ellie Hatton, Senior, Florida

Hatton worked with the Night to Shine Prom. At the prom, he helped to take pictures with those attendings, play basketball, and even be paparazzi. She also had been involved with the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.

Zoie Hartman, Junior, Georgia

Hartman has volunteered in each of the past two years with the UGA Campus Kitchen’s Turkeypalooza campaign, providing Thanksgiving meals to members of the Athens-Clarke County area. She also worked with the Wellspring Living Shelter in a hoodie drive, assisting victims of child sex trafficking and with the UGA Athletic Association in assisting The Salvation Army in its 2021 holiday bell ringing campaign. Hartman worked with Team Impact in continuing to foster the relationship between the Georgia swimming and diving team and Mycah Wallace, a young Leukemia survivor, who was “signed” to the program in March 2020. She is a member of the Leadership, Education, and Development Academy (L.E.A.D.), a 40-member group that helps student-athletes build leadership skills, network with professionals, and facilitate personal growth, as well as a team representative on the University of Georgia Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. Hartman has been named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll and J. Reid Parker Director of Athletics Honor Roll in each of her first two seasons. She was the recipient of the Lisa Coole Memorial Swimming and Diving Scholarship for three consecutive seasons. In the water, she has earned 14 All-America citations.

Tori Orcutt, Sophomore, Kentucky

Orcutt has contributed 119 hours of community service so far during the 2021-22 academic year. Organizations she has volunteered with throughout the Lexington community include the Salvation Army, Southland Christian Church, Christmas Miracles Project, Amachi, God’s Pantry, Kentucky Children’s Hospital, ACE Elementary School, Southland Children’s Ministry, the Veterans Administration, and the Ronald McDonald House. Some of her many community service projects have included serving as a mentor, leading youth activities, packaging and delivering food, collecting and donating school supplies, and creating holiday celebrations for families in need. Orcutt holds a 4.0 grade-point-average as a psychology major. In the pool, Orcutt was part of the Kentucky team that won its first-ever SEC Championship title in 2021. She was named to the 2020 SEC First-Year Academic Honor Roll. Orcutt also won the Community Service Award at the 2021 CATSPY Awards, UK Athletics’ annual award banquet.

Natalie Kucsan, Senior, LSU

Kucsan is one of the leaders for LSU’s division of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. During 2021 and the early days of 2022, she has served eight different events, including the St. Jude Walk/Run and Girls on the Run 5K. She wrote cards to healthcare and dining hall workers at the Our Lady of the Lake Hospital. Kucsan aided the Halloween BOOzar, an annual free event that provides a safe and fun environment for children of all ages and their families to enjoy trick-or-treating activities and carnival games while interacting with LSU student-athletes. She also helped out with the donation drive in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida and the SAAC Sock Drive. An elementary education major, Kucsan has substituting for teachers unable to attend school.

Amy Feddersen, Junior, Missouri

Feddersen volunteers weekly with Special Olympics swimming and with kids ministry at The Crossing Church. She has worked with local schools as a guest speaker at John Warner Middle School, as part of the SAAC pen pal program with Benton Elementary and with virtual announcements at Battle Elementary. Feddersen also has worked with Habitat for Humanity, Swim Across America and Columbia Foster and Adoption Project. She claimed All-America First-Team honors as part of Mizzou’s fourth-place 200 free relay at the 2021 NCAA Championships. She was also named to the 2021 All-SEC Second Team and the 2020-21 Winter SEC Academic Honor Roll.

Emma Scheider, Senior, South Carolina

Scheider has worked over 200 community service hours in her career at South Carolina, mostly at the Free Medical Clinic and at the Crisis Text Line. She volunteered at the Free Medical Clinic in Columbia, SC as a medical assistant and her duties included taking vitals, EKGs, urinalysis, and blood glucose checks. Scheider also triaged patients, cleaned the facility, and helped patients fill out their financial assistance forms. For her work with the Crisis Text Line, she completed a 30-hour training to be able to volunteer. Her duties involved being an online moderator for people to anonymously write in where she could guide them through tough situations and mental health crisis. Scheider also participated in team community service events such as Relay for Life throughout her time at South Carolina. She is a three-time SEC Academic Honor Roll member (2019, 2020, 2021) and secretary of the Pre-PA student group on campus. Scheider is also a member of Alpha Epsilon Delta, an honor society for health professionals.

Kara Holt, Junior, Tennessee

A member of Tennessee’s VOLeaders Academy Class of 2021-22, Lady Vol diver Holt has been active in the community, accumulating over 30 hours of community service since July. This summer, she will be a part of a cultural exchange trip to Botswana. Holt assisted with volunteer opportunities through Knoxville Area Rescue Mission (KARM) as well as various elementary schools around the city. With KARM, she helped write inspirational notes and decorate cards given to residents of the “Every Bed, Every Night” program. In the local schools, Holt spent time assisting the school nurse along with leading and teaching students different activities during PE class.

Mollie Wright, Senior, Texas A&M

Wright has dedicated her time away from the pool and the classroom to a number of organizations in the community. She has served with BCS Together, which works with families and children touched by the child welfare in the Brazos Valley, and also spent time volunteering with the local Boys and Girls club. Wright has also given her time to AggiesCAN, the largest student-athlete run canned food drive in the nation, as well as REVed up to Read. She has served as a team representative with the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee for two years and has been an ambassador for the 12th Man Foundation’s 1922 Fund. Wright is a multi-year SEC Academic and AD Honor Roll member. Abby Burke, Senior, Vanderbilt Burke participates in activities at the Cross Point Church in Nashville and has also volunteered with Vanderbilt Project Safe Center and Voter Registration Day activities in 2020. She has also taken part in volunteer events at Buena Vista Elementary School, helps the Nashville Dolphins swim team and contributed to the Vanderbilt Dance Marathon during her time in school. After making the 2018-19 First-Year Academic Honor Roll, Burke has been named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll each of the last two seasons.

Abby Burke, Senior, Vanderbilt

Burke participates in activities at the Cross Point Church in Nashville and has also volunteered with Vanderbilt Project Safe Center and Voter Registration Day activities in 2020. She has also taken part in volunteer events at Buena Vista Elementary School, helps the Nashville Dolphins swim team and contributed to the Vanderbilt Dance Marathon during her time in school. After making the 2018-19 First-Year Academic Honor Roll, Burke has been named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll each of the last two seasons.

Men’s Release

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (February 15, 2022) – The SEC sponsors Community Service Teams for all 21 league sponsored sports. The Community Service Team looks to highlight an athlete from each school who gives back to their community in superior service efforts. The 2022 SEC Men’s Swimming & Diving Community Service Team is as follows:

Cole Brown, Senior, Alabama

An SEC Championships scorer and a member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll, Brown serves as the chair of The University of Alabama Student-Athlete Advisory Committee’s community service committee. In addition to directing SAAC’s outreach efforts, he has given of his time to several projects, including the Crimson Tide’s Halloween Extravaganza, A Night to Shine, the Alberta Head Start reading initiative, Habitat for Humanity, Project Angel Tree and the Alberta Easter Egg Hunt.

Michael Bonson, Sophomore, Auburn

Bonson is in his second year at Auburn and has made helping in the community a priority both on campus and back in his home state of Louisiana. Over the last two years, he has worked with special needs children and teens at the Opelika Sportsplex and helped them prepare for Special Olympics. Bonson also participated in the Beat Bama Food Drive in 2020 and 2021, helping collect food to benefit the Food Bank of East Alabama. Last year, he helped in collecting money and supplies to support the relief efforts of Hurricane Ida, a Category 4 storm that ripped through his home state.

Advait Page, Junior, Florida

Page has helped out at Talbot Elementary School, Noah’s Endeavors, and the Night to Shine Prom. At the prom, he helped to take pictures with those attendings, play basketball, and even be paparazzi. Page has also been involved with the International Student-Athlete Meet-Up.

Keegan Walsh, Senior, Georgia

Walsh serves as the co-president of the University of Georgia Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, as elected by vote of the student-athlete population and athletics staff. In his role, he organizes bi-weekly meetings to discuss matters of athlete well-being, leadership workshops, and community outreach relations. Walsh also serves as the leader of the Behavioral Medicine subcommittee, helping promote the importance of mental health for the student-athlete population. He is a member of the Leadership, Education, and Development Academy (L.E.A.D.), a 40-member group that helps student-athletes build leadership skills, network with professionals, and facilitate personal growth. In other activities, Walsh worked with the Gwinnett County Board of Elections in June 2020 to help with the distribution of provisional ballots and voter registration cards for the primary election, also helping with administering voting day operations. He also helped organize the UGA Athletic Association’s participation with The Salvation Army for their 2021 holiday bell ringing operation in the Athens community. Previously, Walsh served as the vice president of member development for the UGA Finance Society, creating a mentorship program that paired underclassmen and upperclassmen together to broaden business experience, along with presenting workshops designed to assist with resume building, personal branding, and interviewing. He also worked as a swimming coach for the Cricket Commons Cyclone Swimming Team for four years as a head and assistant coach. Walsh has been named to the CSCAA Scholar All-America Team, J. Reid Parker Director of Athletics Honor Roll, and SEC Academic Honor Roll in each of his previous three seasons, earning Presidential Scholar Honors (4.0 GPA) in the spring 2020 semester. He was awarded the Ramsey Scholarship for Academic & Athletic Excellence for the 2021-22 season.

Nick Caruso, Freshman, Kentucky

Caruso logged several hours of community service during his first semester at Kentucky, serving at God’s Pantry and Tri for Sight. His community service projects have included unloading and stocking canned food, preparing and delivering meals, and assisting with cleanup and breakdown after a triathlon.

Spencer Adrian, Junior, LSU

Adrian aided the Halloween BOOzar, an annual free event that provides a safe and fun environment for children of all ages and their families to enjoy trick-or-treating activities and carnival games while interacting with LSU student-athletes. He is also a representative of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee, which is committed to providing insight to the student athlete experience.

Danny Kovac, Senior, Missouri

Kovac has worked with Special Olympics, Swim Across America, the local food bank, the box car derby, trail clean-ups and has fostered a dog. He claimed five All-America honors at the 2021 NCAA Championships and four All-America honors at the 2019 NCAA Championships. Kovac was named to the 2020-21 Winter SEC Academic Honor Roll.

Rafael Davila, Senior, South Carolina

Davila has participated in several team-based community service events during his time as a Gamecock. He lists his favorites as the Relay for Life fundraiser and collecting school supplies for local elementary schools. Davila also assists the swimming community in his home country of Venezuela. He often donates his additional swim equipment to members of his community back home. Davila’s family also delivers toys to local hospitals in Venezuela over the holidays. He is a 2018 CSCAA Scholar All-American honorable mention, and was named to the 2018 SEC All-Freshman Team and the 2019 All-SEC Second Team. Davila has also served as a Marketing intern at the University.

Brett Champlin, Junior, Tennessee

Champlin was a member of the 2020-21 VOLeaders Academy, which was developed to cultivate positive student-athlete leaders through sport to create positive social change. He earned 20 community service hours throughout his time with the program. Champlin’s time with the program ended with a 10-day cultural exchange trip in July to Belize, where he applied leadership skills and participated in service opportunities focused on community development and social change. One of the main community projects that the group worked on was stripping paint and then entirely repainting three school buildings in Belize. Champlin also spent numerous hours interacting with kids and teaching them different sports throughout the trip.

Peter Simmons, Senior, Texas A&M

Simmons has been a leader among his peers when it comes to community involvement with his biggest commitment coming with the Aggies CAN initiative, the largest student-athlete run canned food drive in the nation. He helped lead the campaigning efforts for the canned food drive, while also collecting cans at various events. Simmons has also spent time reading to student at Spring Creek Elementary School. He has dedicated 39 hours to community service in his career, over 10 hours coming in 2021-22 while balancing an intense academic schedule, swimming and his involvement in SAAC. Simmons is the president of A&M’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee this year, previously serving as vice president and as a team representative. He has served as a Traditions Night Huddle Leader. In the classroom, Simmons has earned TAMU Distinguished Student honors, and in the fall, he received the Craig C. Brown Outstanding Engineer Award. He has been a multi-year member of the SEC Academic and AD Honor Rolls.

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Hookem91
9 months ago

I wish more conferences would do this. Very cool to see all the good work these swimmers are doing outside the pool!