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NCAA Woman of the Year Nomination and Award Process

NCAA Woman of the Year Logo

The NCAA Woman of the Year award honors graduating female student-athletes who have distinguished themselves throughout their collegiate careers in the areas of academic achievement, athletics excellence, service and leadership. Student-athletes are nominated only once in their career by their institution.

The NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics (CWA) manages the nomination process and selections. From 2010 through 2014, an average of 451 female college athletes per year, representing multiple ethnicities and all NCAA-sponsored sports within Divisions I, II and III, were nominated for the award.

Each NCAA member school is encouraged to honor its top graduating female student-athlete with this nomination and community recognition. The nomination form is completed and submitted by the member school via the NCAA Program Hub. Nominations are due Friday, May 29, 2015, by 5 p.m. Eastern time. Member schools are urged to submit two nominations if at least one of the nominees is a woman of color or international student-athlete. Nominees from reclassifying institutions will be considered and evaluated in the division in which they were nominated by a conference or, for independents, the division in which they competed in their primary sport. While each school can submit more than one nominee for consideration, the NCAA Program Hub technology will accept only one nomination per nominator. Therefore, any additional nominations will need to be submitted by another staff member at your school.

Upon receiving nominations from its member schools, each conference will be responsible for assessing each nominee’s eligibility and subsequently select up to two conference nominees based on their respective achievements in service, leadership, athletics and academics. Conferences may recognize two nominees if at least one of the nominees is a woman of color or international student-athlete.

Each conference office must submit its nominee(s) to the national office by Tuesday, June 30, 2015 at 5 p.m. Eastern time via the NCAA Program Hub or emailing Richard Zhu at rzhu@ncaa.org. All conference nominees will be forwarded to the Woman of the Year selection committee. The selection committee will choose the top 10 honorees in each division. From among those 30 candidates, the selection committee will determine the top three in each division. Finally, the members of the CWA will vote from among the top nine finalists to determine the 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year.

For those nominees in Divisions I and II whose primary sports are unaffiliated with a conference office, nominations are submitted via the NCAA Program Hub. Independents in these divisions will be considered among all conference nominees by the selection committee. For nominees in Division III whose primary sports are unaffiliated with a conference office, nominations are sent to the Association of Division III Independents for consideration. The Association of Division III Independents will select its nominee(s) (if at least one of the nominees is a woman of color or international student-athlete) and notify the national office via the NCAA Program Hub or emailing Richard Zhu at rzhu@ncaa.org by the Tuesday, June 30, 2015, deadline.

All honorees receive an NCAA certificate and will be recognized on NCAA.org. The top 10 honorees from Divisions I, II and III, including the nine overall finalists, will be honored, and the 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year winner announced, at a dinner in Indianapolis on Sunday, October 18, 2015.

Nomination Eligibility:

  • Nominee must have completed intercollegiate eligibility in her primary sport by the end of the 2014-15 competitive season and received her undergraduate degree no later than the summer 2015 term.
  • Nominee must have a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 2.500 (4.000 scale).

To be considered for the NCAA Woman of the Year award:

  • All information on the student-athlete nomination form, including the personal statement, in NCAA Program Hub must be complete.
  • Nominee and designated athletics department personnel (director of athletics, senior woman administrator, sports information director) must sign the institutional verification form provided within the nomination form and uploaded into the NCAA Program Hub application.
  • Videos, media guides, emailed photographs or other supplemental materials from schools, conferences and nominees will NOT be considered by the selection committee.

Selection Guidelines:

The NCAA Woman of the Year selection committee will determine the top 10 and top three honorees in each division by considering the following guidelines. The NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics will also use these guidelines when selecting the 2015 award winner. Nominees from Divisions I, II and III will be considered equally for national awards. Incomplete nominations will not be given full consideration. Conferences are urged to use the selection guidelines when determining their nominees; however, the NCAA national office will score athletics achievement for the selection committee’s review. The selection committee will score service and leadership achievements.

Service and Leadership - 28% (maximum five points possible).

Points are based on the nominee's involvement in campus and community activities and organizations.

Academic Achievement - 28% (maximum five points possible). Points are based on undergraduate cumulative GPA. Graduate work GPA should be noted in the nomination form where indicated.

  • 3.600 - 4.000 Cumulative GPA - 5
  • 3.300 - 3.599 Cumulative GPA - 4
  • 3.000 - 3.299 Cumulative GPA - 3
  • 2.750 - 2.999 Cumulative GPA - 2
  • 2.500 - 2.749 Cumulative GPA - 1

Athletics Excellence - 28% (maximum five points possible, scored by the national office staff).

Team Sports: basketball, bowling, field hockey, ice hockey, lacrosse, rowing, rugby, sand volleyball, soccer, softball, volleyball and water polo. Individual Sports: cross country, equestrian, fencing, golf, gymnastics, rifle, skiing, swimming & diving, tennis, track & field and triathlon.

Indicate any of the following:

  1. Team champion, or first-team athletic all-American, or a member of an Olympic team – 5
  2. Top-three finisher in an individual sport at an NCAA championship – 5
  3. Athletic all-America honors other than first team – 4
  4. Regional all-America honors - 3
  5. First team athletic all-conference honors or individual or team conference champion – 3
  6. Multisport letter-winner – 3
  7. Varsity letter-winner or athletic all-conference honors other than first team – 2

Personal Statement - 16% (maximum three points possible). The nominee should describe in 200 words (strictly enforced) how her community service and experiences as a scholar, an athlete, and a leader on her campus and in her community have influenced her life and shaped the person she is today.

Awards Schedule:

  • Nomination open via NCAA Program Hub on Wednesday, April 8, 2015.
  • Member school nominations must be submitted via NCAA Program Hub by Friday, May 29, 2015, by 5 p.m. Eastern time.
  • Conference nominees/independents must be submitted via NCAA Program Hub or emailed to rzhu@ncaa.org by Tuesday, June 30, 2015, at 5 p.m. Eastern time.
  • Top 30 (10 per division) announced in August 2015.
  • Top 9 (3 per division) announced in September 2015.
  • Woman of the Year announced at the awards dinner in Indianapolis on Sunday, October 18, 2015.

For additional information, contact: Richard Zhu at (317/917-6222) or rzhu@ncaa.org.

To Begin the Member School Nomination Process:

  1. Contact your school’s nominee(s) and let her know you will be nominating her for this award and the nomination will include her personal statement (up to 200 words answering how her community service and experiences as a scholar, an athlete, and a leader on her campus and in her community have influenced her life and shaped the person she is today).
  2. Access the Program Hub online nomination form at https://web1.ncaa.org/CRS/exec/login.
  3. If you are a repeat Program Hub user, log in with your “Program Hub User” email and password. To create a profile as a new user, click the “Create A New Profile” button under the “New User” section.
  4. Follow the instructions in Steps 1 and 2. Input your school's name in “Step 3: Institution and Role” found under the “Profile” tab. If your school's name is not provided, you will be unable to access the NCAA Woman of the Year application under the “Applications” tab.
  5. Click the “Applications” tab located in the middle of the top navigation bar.
  6. Click “Start Registration Application – 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year.”
  7. Complete the nomination form. A maximum of 80 characters (letters, symbols and spaces) are allowed for each grid box on pages 3 through 6 of the nomination form. If a grid box exceeds 80 characters, the information will not be saved and cannot be submitted. Please note that each question on the nomination form must be answered in order to submit the NCAA Woman of the Year application. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

    Note: the nomination form must include your nominee’s personal statement (200 words or less). Copy your nominee’s personal statement and paste it in the box provided. Also, make sure to upload the “Institution Verification Form” with required signatures where indicated. Nomination forms without a personal statement and uploaded verification form will not be considered complete.
  8. Click “Save and Submit” on the final page to submit your nomination.

Quick Tips:

While each school can submit up to two nominees for consideration if at least one nominee is a woman of color or international student-athlete, the NCAA Program Hub technology will accept only one nomination per nominator. Therefore, any additional nominations will need to be submitted by another staff member at your school.

Nomination forms must also designate the conference office with which the nominee’s primary sport is affiliated. Nominees from reclassifying institutions will be considered and evaluated in the division in which their school nominated them, or, for independents, the division in which they competed in their primary sport.

New for 2015:

Member schools are no longer required to submit a verification page, head shot and action shot to their conference office.

To Begin the Conference Office Nomination Process:

  1. After the member school nomination period ends, the NCAA will email each conference’s commissioner, senior woman administrator and sports information director (as listed in the NCAA directory) a PDF that includes a list of nominees from the conference’s member institutions, and each nominee’s electronic application and personal statement. PDFs will be emailed by Friday, June 5, 2015.

    Conferences interested in receiving their member schools’ nominations before June 5, 2015 may contact Richard Zhu at rzhu@ncaa.org.
  2. The conference office is responsible for assessing each nominee’s eligibility and selecting its conference nominee(s). Conferences may recognize two nominees if at least one of the nominees is a woman of color or international student-athlete.
  3. Each conference office must email its conference nominee’s name(s) along with the name of each nominee’s school to Richard Zhu at rzhu@ncaa.org by June 30, 2015, at 5 p.m. Eastern time.

What happens next?

All conference nominees are forwarded to the Woman of the Year selection committee.

When considering conference nominees, the selection committee will also consider nominees in Divisions I and II whose primary sports are unaffiliated with a conference office along with the nominee forwarded by the Association of Division III Independents. (The Association of Division III Independents will consider Division III nominees whose primary sports are unaffiliated with a conference office and notify the national office of its nominee.)

New for 2015: 

Conference offices are no longer required to collect signature pages, head shots and actions shots from their member schools. Additionally, conference offices are no longer required to submit the conference nominee signature page to the NCAA.