December 12, 2013

NEWMAC to Host NCAA Division III Integration Symposium Thursday

BOSTON, Mass. – The New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) will conduct an NCAA Division III Integration Symposium on Thursday, December 12 at the Boston Marriott Newton Hotel in Newton, Mass. The symposium will bring together key, institutional partners from across the conference in an effort to discuss ways in which NEWMAC member institutions, individually and collectively, might best support the NCAA Division III philosophy that “a student-athlete’s athletics activities are conducted as an integral part of the student-athlete’s overall educational experience.”   

The NEWMAC is proud to sponsor this Integration Symposium and bring together our varied constituents to engage in conversation about the valued role that intercollegiate athletics plays on our campuses and in the lives of our student-athletes,” said NEWMAC President and Wellesley College Director of Athletics, Bridget Belgiovine. Many thanks to the planning committee, led by Lori Hendricks, Director of Athletics at Mount Holyoke College, for their efforts to create a diverse agenda for all participants.

The symposium program, which features a series of panel discussions, was developed to engage diverse campus constituents in productive conversations and to share best practices with the goal of enhancing the overall experience for all NEWMAC student-athletes.

Thursday’s symposium will also feature, Dr. Donna Lopiano, President and founder of Sports Management Resources. Dr. Lopiano will deliver the keynote address entitled “Expanding Opportunities for Athletes with Disabilities.” 

On January 24, 2013, the Office for Civil Rights issued a Dear Colleague Letter clarifying the obligations of education institutions under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 to provide extracurricular athletics opportunities for students with disabilities. Thpresentation will focus on the issues critical to NEWMAC institutions around this topic. Dr. Lopiano will also suggest how the NEWMAC might play a leadership role in developing model programs for athletes with disabilities.

Dr. Lopiano is the former Chief Executive Officer of the Women’s Sports Foundation (1992-2007) and was named one of “The 10 Most Powerful Women in Sports” by Fox Sports.  The Sporting News has also listed her as one of “The 100 Most Influential People in Sports.” 

“At its core the NEWMAC stands for academic and athletic excellence and the purpose of the Integration Symposium is to bring our 11 institutions together and make sure we continue to support these values in our athletic departments and throughout our campuses,” NEWMAC Executive Director, Patrick B. Summers remarked. “We find our strength in the diversity of our membership but our commitment to the NEWMAC Philosophy and the NCAA Division III Philosophy are ones we share.  I am looking forward to our panel discussions and hearing from our special guests, Louise McCleary, NCAA Director of Division III and Dr. Donna Lopiano, a true champion and advocate for Title IX and gender equity in sports.”

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