Saint Augustine's University recent graduate Cherrisse Lynch (Bridgetown, Barbados) was nominated for the NCAA Woman of the Year Award, which was announced Friday, June 19, 2015.
Lynch, who graduated in May 2015 with a biology degree, is one of 480 female scholar-athletes nominated for the honor. The number of nominees is the most ever in the history of the award.
The Woman of the Year Award honors graduating female college scholar-athletes who have exhausted their eligibility and distinguished themselves throughout their collegiate careers in academics, athletics, service and leadership. Of the nominees, 207 competed in Division I, 93 competed in Division II and 180 competed in Division III athletics. Saint Augustine's University is a NCAA Division II member.
During her four-year career at Saint Augustine's University, Lynch garnered All-America accolades on the track and in the classroom. A six-time Track All-American, Lynch was a key runner on the Lady Falcons' women's 4x400-meter relay squad which captured a national title and placed second four times during her career at the NCAA Division II national meet. The Lady Falcons' runner also captured nine all-region awards. Lynch was named Academic All-American twice by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).
In conference meets, Lynch earned 17 All-CIAA honors and was a key member on three CIAA championship teams. She was a part of three 4x400 relay teams, one 4x100 relay squad and one distance medley unit which won CIAA conference crowns. Lynch also was selected to the CIAA Commissioner's All-Academic Team in 2014 and 2015. In cross country, Lynch helped the Lady Falcons win the CIAA championship in 2012.
In addition to her athletic and academic achievements, Lynch was active in the community. In February 2015, Lynch was one of eight CIAA track & field scholar-athletes who donated supplies to The Bethesda Center in Winston-Salem, N.C. The Bethesda Center is the leading provider of shelter and services for homeless men and women in Forsyth County.
On the same month, Lynch helped to increase the number of donors for the Project Life Bone Marrow Drive on the Saint Augustine's University campus in Raleigh, N.C. Lynch is a member of the University's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) which sponsored the bone marrow drive. In October 2014, Lynch was among the CIAA cross country scholar-athletes who donated items to the N.C. Children's Hospital in Chapel Hill, N.C.
Lynch, who graduated with a 3.8 cumulative grade point average, was one of seven CIAA nominees for the Woman of the Year Award. The CIAA will select two nominees and send their names to the Woman of the Year selection committee, which will choose the top 30 honorees – 10 from each division.
The selection committee will determine the top three nominees from each division out of the 30 honorees and will announce the top nine finalists in September 2015. The NCAA Committee on Women's Athletics then will choose the 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year from the nine nominees.
The 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year winner will be announced, and the Top 30 honorees celebrated, at the annual award ceremony in Indianapolis on October 18, 2015.