Case Western Reserve University graduate student-athlete Stephen Hrinda (Fairview, Pa.), a member of the cross country and track and field teams, has been named one of six finalists (three male, three female) for the 2007 Walter Byers Scholarship Award, as announced by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).
The Walter Byers Scholarship, established in 1988 to recognize the contributions of the former NCAA executive director, is one of the most prestigious honors the NCAA hands out to student-athletes in recognition of their outstanding academic achievements and future success in their postgraduate studies and careers.
"The Walter Byers is the most prestigious scholarship the NCAA awards," said Case Athletic Director Dave Diles. "Stephen's selection as a finalist reflects exceptionally well on the intercollegiate program and our university. On a personal note, having served as a member of the Walter Byers Scholarship Committee, and served as chair for three years, I'm proud of Stephen's accomplishments, and know that he will compete very well in the interview process."
Hrinda received a bachelor's degree in biology in May 2006. He is currently pursuing a master's degree in business administration and public health.
Hrinda is a 2005 and 2006 ESPN The Magazine first team Academic All-American, has been on the Dean's High Honors list eight times (2002-2006) and has a 4.0 GPA. He is a 10-time UAA All-Academic honoree in cross country and track. Hrinda is a two-time All-UAA selection (2003 & 2005) in cross country and qualified for nationals twice (2003 & 2005). His track honors include six varsity letters, three All-UAA honors and a two UAA Championships (10,000m outdoor in 2006 & 5,000m indoor in 2007).
"To be honest, I never really believed that I had a chance to make it to this stage in the process because I considered being chosen to represent Case for the Walter Byers Scholarship as an honor in itself," said Hrinda. "I am very excited to travel to Indianapolis for the interview process, and am looking forward to meeting the other finalists. I have always considered meeting accomplished student-athletes from other universities as one of the most rewarding experiences of being a student-athlete."
The NCAA selects one male and one female student-athlete as its Walter Byers Scholars each year. The Byers Scholars each receive a $21,500 scholarship to be used for graduate school. The NCAA will select the two (a male and a female) Walter Byers Scholars later this month.
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