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Division II philosophy statement

In addition to the purposes and fundamental policy of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, as set forth in Constitution 1, members of Division II believe that a well-conducted intercollegiate athletics program, based on sound educational principles and practices, is a proper part of the educational mission of a university or college and that the educational well-being and academic success of the participating student-athlete is of primary concern. (Revised: 1/14/08 effective 8/1/08)

Higher education has lasting importance on an individual's future success.  For this reason, the positioning statement for the division and the emphasis for the student-athlete experience in Division II is a comprehensive program of learning and development in a personal setting.  The Division II approach provides growth opportunities through academic achievement, learning in high-level athletics competition and development of positive societal attitudes in service to community.  The balance and integration of these different areas of learning provide Division II student-athletes a path to graduation while cultivating a variety of skills and knowledge for life ahead.

Members support the following attributes in the belief that these attributes assist in defining the division's priorities and emphasize the division's position within the Association: Learning; Service; Passion; Sportsmanship; Resourcefulness; and Balance. The positioning statement and the attributes shall serve as a guide for the preparation of legislation by the division and for planning and implementation of programs, initiatives and policies by member institutions, conferences and the Division II governance structure.

Furthermore, a member of Division II believes in a set of common features, which assist in defining the division.  Such features include exceptional teacher-to-student ratios that provide student-athletes with a quality education, a unique model of staffing in which coaches provide additional services such as teaching and mentoring, and the development of community partnerships and student-athlete participation in community engagement activities.  A member of Division II also believes in the following principles, which assist in defining the division: (Revised: 1/14/97)

(a)  Promoting the academic success of its student-athletes, measured in part by an institution's student-athletes graduating at least at the same rate as the institution's student body; (Revised: 1/12/04 effective 8/1/04)

(b)  That participation in intercollegiate athletics benefits the educational experience of its student-athletes and the entire campus community; (Revised: 1/12/04 effective 8/1/04)

(c)  Offering opportunities for intercollegiate athletics participation consistent with the institution's mission and philosophy; (Revised: 1/14/97, 1/12/04 effective 8/1/04)

(d)  That championships are intended to provide national-level competition among eligible student-athletes and teams of members institutions; (Revised: 1/9/06 effective 8/1/06)

(e)  Preparing student-athletes to be good citizens, leaders and contributors in their communities; (Revised: 1/12/04 effective 8/1/04)

(f)  Striving for equitable participation and competitive excellence, encouraging sportsmanship and ethical conduct, enhancing diversity and developing positive societal attitudes in all of its athletics endeavors; (Revised: 1/14/97, 1/12/04 effective 8/1/04)

(g)  Scheduling the majority of its athletics competition with other members of Division II, insofar as regional qualification, geographical location and traditional or conference scheduling patterns permit; (Revised: 1/14/97)

(h)  Recognizing the need to "balance" the role of the athletics program to serve both the institution (e.g., participants, student body, faculty-staff) and the general public (e.g., community, area, state); (Revised: 1/12/04 effective 8/1/04)

(i)  Offering an opportunity for participation in intercollegiate athletics by awarding athletically related financial aid to its student-athletes; (Revised: 1/14/97, 1/14/02, effective 8/1/02)

(j)  That institutional control is a fundamental principle that supports the educational mission of a Division II institution and assumes presidential involvement and commitment.  All funds supporting athletics should be controlled by the institution.  The emphasis for an athletics department should be to operate within an institutionally approved budget and compliance with and self enforcement of NCAA regulations is an expectation of membership; and  (Adopted: 1/14/02 effective 8/1/02, Revised: 1/12/04 effective 8/1/04)

(k)  That all members of Division II should commit themselves to this philosophy and to the regulations and programs of Division II. (Revised: 1/14/97)