March 1, 2012

NCAA Announces Santa Clara University Athletics Fully Certified

Santa Clara, Calif. The Santa Clara Athletic program has been fully certified, the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I Committee on Athletics Certification announced today, March 1, 2012.  The certified designation denotes that Santa Clara University operates its athletics program in full compliance with the operating principles adopted by the Division I membership.

The announcement follows a self-study that was conducted for more than 18 months and covered governance and commitment to rules compliance, academic integrity, gender and diversity issues and student-athlete well-being.  NCAA Division I institutions are required to conduct a self-study every 10 years. Santa Clara completed its last report in 2001.

Gary Neustadter, a Santa Clara University Professor of Law, chaired the steering committee that led the self-study process beginning in September of 2010.

Three subcommittees assisted the steering committee. Each group included faculty, student alumni and staff representatives, including athletics department personnel. The process provided opportunities for communication with and input from all members of the university community.

"I want to express our deep appreciation to Gary Neustadter for spearheading Santa Clara's NCAA certification effort," said Santa Clara University president, Michael E. Engh, S.J. "This process took almost two years and involved dozens of University faculty, staff, and student-athletes who spent hundreds of hours meeting, collecting information, analyzing data, and producing a voluminous written certification plan.  Professor Neustadter, who also headed up Santa Clara's previous NCAA certification effort 10 years ago, did a masterful job organizing the university's approach from beginning to end."

 

"I also would like to thank Gary Neustadter for his tireless work during this process,” said Santa Clara University Director of Athletics and Recreation Dan Coonan. “I would also like to thank University Senior Lecturer Nedra Shunk, Vice Provost Jeanne Rosenberger and University General Counsel John Ottoboni, for their work chairing key sub-committees during the process. Finally, I would like to thank Santa Clara President Father Engh for becoming personally involved in the university’s certification efforts which was tremendously beneficial throughout the process and critical to this successful outcome.”

 

The NCAA is a membership organization of colleges and universities that participate in intercollegiate athletics. Its primary purpose is to maintain intercollegiate athletics as an integral part of the educational program and the athlete as an integral part of the student body. Activities of the NCAA membership include formulating rules of play for NCAA sports, conducting national championships, adopting and enforcing standards of eligibility and studying all phases of intercollegiate athletics.

 

This cycle represents the last certifications started before a moratorium was placed on the program in April 2011 by the Division I Board of Directors.  In January 2011, NCAA President Emmert asked staff to evaluate the program to reduce the burden on institutions, increase cost-effectiveness and improve the overall value.

 

Legislation mandating certification was adopted for all active Division I schools in 1993 to ensure the integrity of each member institution’s athletics program, while assisting institutions with improvements when necessary.

 

The following people were involved in the course of the NCAA certification process for Santa Clara University:

Gary Neustadter (faculty member; Steering Committee Chair)

Aldo Billingslea (faculty member)

Michael Carey (member, University Board of Trustees) 

Dan Coonan (Director of Athletics and Recreation)

Michael Engh, S.J. (President of the University)

Charles Erekson (Vice Provost for Planning and Administration)

Harry Fong (Associate Vice President for Finance)

Staci Gustafson (Associate Athletic Director/Senior Woman Administrator)

Colleen Lim (staff member, West Coast Conference)

Molly McDonald (Assistant Vice President for Human Resources)

Jeff Mitchell (Assistant Athletic Director for Compliance and Student  Services; certification liaison)

Christopher Mosier (President, Associated Student Government)

John Ottoboni (University Legal Counsel)

Jeanne Rosenberger (Vice Provost for Student Life and Dean of Students)

Andy Schatzman (alumnus; President of the Bronco Bench Foundation)

Tanya Schmidt (student-athlete)

Nedra Shunk (faculty member)

Steven Wade (faculty member; Faculty Athletic Representative)