Feb. 15, 2006
Seniors Stephanie Madia (Wexford, Pa.) and Patrick Davis (Clearwater, Fla.) are the recent recipients of $2,000 stipends applicable to graduate studies – as presented by the BIG EAST Conference, in recognition of their status as Notre Dame’s nominees for the conference’s annual female and male scholar-athlete awards.
Madia is wrapping up a stellar career as a member of the Notre Dame cross country and track-and-field teams while carrying a 3.48 cumulative grade-point average as a finance major. The All-America distance runner was one of four finalists for the 2005-06 Honda Sports Award in women’s cross country. Her third-place finish at the 2005 NCAA cross country championships matched the best-ever by a Notre Dame female runner and capped an impressive senior season that saw the Irish captain place sixth or higher at all five races in which she competed (including four top-three finishes). She became the Notre Dame women’s cross country program’s fifth repeat All-American while helping the Irish women finish seventh in the team standings, for the program’s fourth consecutive top-10 NCAA finish.
Stephanie Madia placed third at the 2005 NCAA cross country championships to repeat as an All-American.
A 2006 NCAA provisional qualifier in the indoor 3,000 meters, Madia earlier collected All-America track honors during the spring of 2005, after placing fifth in the outdoor 5,000 (16:43). Her top effort during the 2006 indoor track season has been a fourth-place showing at Notre Dame’s Meyo Invitational (9:27) and she is set to compete at this weekend’s BIG EAST Championships in both the mile run and the 3,000. The three-time all-BIG EAST track performer (in the 2004 and ’05 outdoor 5,000 and the ’05 indoor 3,000) also has qualified for the NCAA Mideast Regional twice in the outdoor 5,000 (’04 and ’05) and in 2003 for the outdoor 1,500. She is a two-year member of the athletic department’s Academic Honors faculty mentoring program and plans to pursue an MBA during her postgraduate studies.
Davis – who reached the 2005 Academic All-America ballot, after receiving Academic All-District V. honors (from the College Sports Information Directors of American) – currently is preparing to compete in three events at the BIG EAST Championships, as the No. 8 seed in the 1,650-yard freestyle, the 11th seed in the 500 free an the 16th seed in the 400 individual medley. A four-year participant in the BIG EAST meet, he placed second in the 1,650 freestyle as a sophomore in 2004 and then helped the Irish win the BIG EAST team title in 2005. He owns the third-best time in Notre Dame history for the 1,650 free (15:34.41), the fourth-best time in the 1,000 free (9:23.23) and the fifth-best in the 500 free (4:28.89) – with each of those times coming at the 2004 BIG EAST meet. His 19 career individual wins include three this season.
Patrick Davis is one of the top distance freestylers in Notre Dame history and owns a 3.80 cumulative GPA as a computer science major in the College of Engineering.
A four-year Dean’s List student as a computer science major in the College of Engineering, Davis posted a 3.92 grade-point average during the 2005 fall semester and carries a 3.80 cumulative GPA as he nears completion of his final semester. He is a member of the athletic department’s Academic Honors faculty mentoring program and the computer science national honor society (Upsilon Pi Epsilon), also serving as a research assistant at Notre Dame in the Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Laboratory (in 2004) and the Computer Vision Research Lab (in ’05-’06)
Patrick Davis was the 2004 BIG EAST runner-up in the 1,650-meter freestyle before helping the Irish men win the 2005 BIG EAST team title.
Six previous Notre Dame student-athletes have received the BIG EAST/Aéropostale Scholar-Athlete of the Year awards, most recently in 2004 when women’s soccer defender Vanessa Pruzinsky was presented with the prestigious honor and the corresponding $4,000 stipend. Notre Dame’s other recipients of the BIG EAST’s top academic award have included: soccer goalkeeper Jen Renola (’97), hurdler Errol Williams (’98), soccer forward Jenny Streiffer (’00) , basketball center Ruth Riley (’01) and softball catcher Jarrah Myers (’02).
Notre Dame’s 22 annual recipients of the respective men’s and women’s $2,000 BIG EAST scholarships (or $4,000, if applicable) include four women’s soccer players – Renola, Shannon Boxx (’99), Streiffer (’00) and Pruzinsky (’04) – and the following six men’s cross country and/or track-and-field student-athletes: shot putter Mike Fleisch (’96), distance runner Jeff Hojnacki (’97) and Marc Striowski (’02), hurdler Williams (’98), pole vaulter Mike Brown (’99) and distance runner Todd Mobley (’04).
Other recipients of the men’s stipend have included swimmers Ray Fitzpatrick (’00) and Davis (’06), baseball pitchers Mike Naumann (’01) and J.P. Gagne (’03) and tennis player Brent D’Amico (’05). The other seven women’s recipients include softball third base/outfielder Jenna Knudsen (’96), volleyball outside hitter Jaimie Lee (’98), Riley (’01), Myers (’02), rower Ashlee Warren (’03), and distance runners Kerry Meagher (’05) and Madia (’06).
The BIG EAST also sponsors an annual Scholar-Athlete Award in men’s and women’s basketball, with three former Irish players – forward Pat Garrity (’98), center Riley (’01) and guard Alicia Ratay (’03) – receiving those honors.