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Pine Belt athletes honored for their academics

By on October 7, 2022 0

TUPELO, Miss. (WDAM) – Athletes from Mississippi’s public/private and two-year/four-year college/community colleges were honored this week for their achievements in the classroom.

The annual Halbrook Awards were presented at the Mississippi Association of Colleges and Universities business meeting.

The program recognizes Mississippi colleges and universities that achieve and maintain high academic standards for their athletes, which encourages higher graduation rates.

The David M. Halbrook Certificate Award for Academic Achievement has been awarded to a male and female athlete at most Mississippi graduate schools, public and private, including:

  • University of Southern Mississippi – Andrew Boyd (Hattiesburg/baseball); Monique Burton (Sydney, Australia/tennis)
  • William Carey University – Joao Vitor (Minacu. Brazil/men’s soccer); McKinley Seal (Franklinton, Louisiana/women’s basketball)
  • Jones College- Kenneth “KJ” Mack (Ocean Springs/Men’s Soccer); Rebekah Baugh (Hattiesburg/women’s soccer)
  • Pearl River Community College – Ryan Burt (Columbus/Baseball); Erin Clifford (women’s soccer/Ocean Springs).

The PRCC Athletic Program has been honored with the John C. and Ernestine McCall Halbrook Improvement Award, a cash prize awarded annually to the college/university/community college showing the greatest increase over the previous year in percentage of graduate athletes.

The David M. Halbrook Traveling Trophy awards were given to colleges and universities with the highest percentage of graduating student-athletes.

This year’s recipients included:

  • Community and Junior College Division: East Mississippi Community College
  • Division of Independent Colleges and Universities: Mississippi College
  • Public Universities Women’s Division: University of Mississippi
  • Public University Men’s Division: University of Mississippi.

Three Mississippi institutions did not participate in the awards: Tougaloo College; Millsaps College and University for Women.

Endowed by former Mississippi Representative David Halbrook Sr. of Belzoni and his brothers, John C. and James G. Halbrook of Belzoni and JA Halbrook of Beaumont, Texas, the awards honor the parents of the brothers, John C. and Ernestine McCall Halbrook.

This year’s awards were announced at the annual MAC conference, which brings together attendees from across the state as presidents and chancellors, directors of studies, directors of student affairs, directors of finance, admissions officers, faculty and other administrators.

Itawamba Community College President Jay Allen, who served as MAC Board Chair in 2021-22, announced the awards.

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