They’ve been carefully selected as part of a new initiative to certify them as leaders in school and beyond, and now it’s their time to shine as dozens of Jacksonville University student-athletes take part in a real-world decorum drill Thursday, March 3, at the Prudential Student-Athlete Etiquette Dinner.
Reflecting a growing trend in the NCAA nationwide, the event is part of JU’s new Phin Academy, which prepares student-athletes for life off the field — in their family, social and business lives. Those chosen have a chance at the dinner to practice etiquette they’ve learned during the academy’s workshops this spring, refining skills such as making connections with professionals and improving formal table manners.
Career consultant Judy Farmer, owner of Yes, and More agency, will discuss techniques in “The Art of Small Talk and Networking,” which will be put to the test at a training platform following dinner as the students join Prudential executives and JU faculty and staff for dessert and networking.
The evening in the Negaard Rowing Center is hosted by Lamar Pottinger, Assistant Director of Student-Athlete Services, who planned and coordinated it with Toni A. Higgs, Director of the Career Resource Center. JU President Tim Cost will offer an opening message, and Chief Athletics Officer Dr. Donald Horner will speak as well.
Phin Academy challenges and supports JU student-athletes who have shown potential to become leaders academically, athletically and in life. It was developed by Student-Athlete Services and partnered with Career Resources.
“One of our core values for our Athletic Department and Student-Athlete Services and the Athletic Department is leadership,” Dr. Horner said. “We aspire to be a model athletic program which other colleges and universities seek to emulate. The Phin Academy is a program that exemplifies what we value. Those taking part have been personally selected; represent the best of our student-athletes; and embody the leadership, honor and respect we hold dear. This enterprise will further their holistic development as student-athletes and beyond.”
The academy offers comprehensive leadership development programming to those accepted, through interactive workshops, career assessments and practical professional experience. To complete the program of workshops and seminars this spring and receive the Phin Academy Certificate, each student-athlete must complete four out of the five programs offered.
Activities in Phin Academy include a Resume Workshop, Etiquette and Network Training, the Prudential Etiquette Dinner, a Career Expo, a Leadership Workshop and, finally, recognition at the annual JAXSPYS Student-Athlete Awards Banquet.
For more information on Phin Academy and the Prudential Etiquette Dinner, contact Lamarr Pottinger at firstname.lastname@example.org.