Student-Athlete Advisory Council
The University of Notre Dame Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC) shall promote efficient communication between the Notre Dame Department of Athletics administration and the student-athlete population. SAAC gives student-athletes an opportunity to effectively communicate with the athletic department staff while providing suggestions and feedback on programs/services designed to meet student-athlete needs. The SAAC shall provide and promote service to fellow student-athletes, the University community, and the greater community at large.
To enrich the overall experience of student-athletes at Notre Dame. The Notre Dame SAAC will accomplish this by:
- Improving relationships between and among teams and individual student- athletes.
- Encouraging more involvement by student-athletes in campus and community service projects.
- Streamlining and promoting efficient communication between Notre Dame Athletics administration and student-athletes to better serve their needs.
- Providing the student-athlete population with an opportunity to effectively communicate with the administration and offer suggestions on programs designed to serve student-athlete needs.
- Creating awareness among the campus community of what it is like to be a student-athlete at the University of Notre Dame.
In an effort to strengthen and empower the student-athlete community, SAAC decided to add two additional meetings to each semesters schedule for all student-athletes. Each meeting is centered around a community building activity that allows for student-athletes to meet one another and simply relax and have some fun.
In one of its showcases, the SAAC Forum was dedicated to showing the newly renovated Castellan Family Fencing Center and allowing non-fencing student-athletes to learn about the sport. Even try it! 60 student-athletes participated in a “mini camp” led by members of the Fighting Irish fencing team, and then fenced against one another. Watch the highlight video below, in which a few student-athletes were mic’d up and shared their experience!
Click here for photos of the event.
Between a Ping Pong tournament, Corn Hole Tournament and much in between, SAAC Forums have exploded in popularity amongst student-athletes. In the most recent Forum, over 130 student-athletes were in attendance celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday with a meal and themed Hungry Games (a competition of several Minute to Win It challenges between 4 teams composed of all sport student-athletes). Enjoy the video recap of the event is below!
Developed in the fall of 2012, Through Irish Eyes is a platform for the student-athletes of Notre Dame to share their own stories, beyond the statistics and numbers of a game, but actual stories showing the people they are and the things they have a passion for. Under the guidance of Mike Harrity and Ally Stanton, Marta Stepien spearheaded the campaign and began with a post covering the student-athlete winter break of 2012 – 2013, which included the BCS Bowl Trip for Notre Dame Football down to Miami Florida.
The ultimate goal is to establish an authentic emotional connection in an informal manner; to create a hub for content that gives a glimpse into the lives of Fighting Irish student-athletes, through their eyes, their perspectives.
Currently, the blog is primarily managed by Editor-In-Chief, Glory Williams.
SAAC Community Project
In addition to the community service that all student-athletes have the opportunity to engage in, SAAC puts together a new community project every year that gives them the chance to leave a more permanent mark on the community. This project spans the entirety of one semester and allows the time for student-athletes to truly build a connection with those with whom they are working.
For the 2014-2015 academic year, SAAC partnered with Habitat for Humanity of St. Joseph County to build a new home for the local Muchemi family. On the first day of the build, student-athletes built the walls and frames of the house. Habitat then transported the frame of the house to the build site, where they will be volunteering throughout the fall and spring semesters in groups of about 15.
For more photos of the SAAC Habitat for Humanity build, click here
SAAC worked with nearby Perley Elementary School in a project to make their Arts Academy building match the dedication and passion of the arts that exists on the inside of the building. Student-athletes dedicated their Sunday afternoons for 4 weekends to go over to the school and work with their students to brainstorm, draw, then paint images on boards that would then be hung on the north facing side of their school. The process bonded elementary school students to Notre Dame student-athletes and allowed them to learn from one another about creativity, goal setting, hard work, and dedication.
For more photos on this project, please visit the following links:
SAAC Officers 2014 – 2015
Max Lachowecki, Senior, Men’s Soccer
Barbara Sullivan, Senior, Women’s Lacrosse
Emily Geyer, Sophomore, Women’s Soccer
Through Irish Eyes, Editor in Chief
Glory Williams, Junior, Women’s Soccer
Community Service Liaisons
David Lowe, Junior, Men’s Golf
Katherine McManus, Junior, Women’s Lacrosse
Kaila Barber, Senior, Women’s Track & Field
Max Lachowecki, Junior, Men’s Soccer
Katie Naughton, Junior, Women’s Soccer
Barbara Sullivan, Senior, Women’s Lacrosse
SAAC Forums Chairs
Casey Africano, Junior, Softball
Danielle Lukish, Junior, Women’s Lacrosse
Forrest Johnson, Graduate Student, Baseball
Ryan Lopez, Junior, Cheerleading
Josh Hagar, Sophomore, Men’s Tennis
Corey Robinson, Sophomore, Football
Monogram Club Board Liaisons
Katey Haus, Senior, Softball
Joanna mulvey, Junior, Rowing
Patrick Murphy, Senior, Swimming & Diving
Find the full roster of all team SAAC Representatives here: SAAC Photo Roster 2014-2015