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Ohio State’s Student-Athlete Advisory Board hosts annual luncheon for professors and advisors

COLUMBUS, Ohio – With an opportunity to show their gratitude to those who coach them in the classroom, Ohio State student-athletes invited professors and advisors to Ohio Stadium Wednesday for the annual Faculty Appreciation Luncheon. It was hosted by the Student-Athlete Advisory Board (SAAB), with members of the Athletic Council and the Student-Athlete Support Services Office (SASSO) among the 100-plus in attendance.

“This is a great day to say thank you to the faculty for everything,” John Macko, a senior academic counselor in the SASSO office, said. “The relationship student-athletes have with them is what it’s all about. We are ‘One University’ and this is certainly part of that focus.”

Dr. Wayne Carlson, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Studies and Dean of Undergraduate Education at Ohio State, addressed the crowd and also stressed the ‘One University’ theme as well as ‘Students First’, two of President Gordon Gee’s six imperatives that will move Ohio State from excellence to eminence.

John Davidson, professor in the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures and a member of the Athletic Council, spoke as well and openly admitted he came to the council with a cynical mind until he saw how hard student-athletes work on both their academics and athletics and their dedication to succeed in both arenas.

To demonstrate the jam-packed schedule of a student-athlete, the Buckeyes put together a short “Day in the Life” video in which cameras were taken around with members of the men’s track, women’s soccer and women’s swimming teams to show their balance between training and classes.

It wouldn’t be an athletics banquet without some awards. Jackie Brousseau, a sophomore on the women’s swimming team, honored Charles Smith of the political science department with the Most Valuable Advisor award, while Jonathan Krabacher, a junior on the rifle team, recognized Curtis Drummond of the Russian department with Most Valuable Professor.

Emceeing the event was Steven Kehoe, a senior on the men’s volleyball team and the SAAB Academic Integrity Committee Chair, who was happy to get a chance to get to know his professor outside of the lecture hall.

“We don’t get a chance to interact with professors outside of class; this day helps us get to know the person as well and helps them get to know us,” Kehoe said. “It’s not just about a grade but about building a relationship.”