June 11, 2012
COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho -- The 2012 West Coast Conference Mike Gilleran Scholar-Athletes of the Year and West Coast Conference Postgraduate Scholarship winners were announced at the third annual WCC Honors Dinner, held last week in conjunction with the Executive Council and Presidents' Council meetings at the Coeur d'Alene Resort. BYU cross country standout Miles Batty was named both the male Mike Gilleran Scholar-Athlete of the Year as well as a recipient of the WCC Postgraduate Scholarship. The female Mike Gilleran Scholar-Athlete of the Year winner was Kim Hill from Pepperdine University, and the female Postgraduate Scholarship recipient was Tanya Schmidt from Santa Clara University. Both Hill and Schmidt were in attendance to receive their awards.
By winning both awards, Batty becomes just the third West Coast Conference male student-athlete to do so since the inception of the Postgraduate Scholarship in 2004. Batty was unable to appear at the Honors Dinner due to ongoing competition, and BYU Athletic Director Tom Holmoe accepted the awards on Batty's behalf.
The WCC Mike Gilleran Scholar-Athlete of the Year is selected by a vote of the WCC's Executive Council to recognize the finest accomplishments in athletics, academics and community service by individuals who have completed their WCC eligibility.
2012 marked the ninth consecutive year that the WCC has awarded one male and one female student-athlete with a scholarship to assist with graduate school or professional school education. Candidates must own a minimum 3.5 GPA on a 4.0 scale, demonstrate a significant athletic contribution on the varsity athletic level in a WCC sponsored sport, and participate in a WCC sport for a minimum of two years. In addition, candidates must have a record of participating in campus or community activities, completed their athletic eligibility, and competed in intercollegiate athletics in the academic year in which they are nominated.
MILES BATTY, BRIGHAM YOUNG UNIVERSITY, MEN'S CROSS COUNTRY
Miles Batty graduated from Brigham Young University as a five-time Dean's List selection with a 3.93 grade point average, double majoring in Neuroscience and Exercise Science. A three-time Mountain West Conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Batty was named the recipient of the 2012 NCAA Walter Byers Postgraduate Scholarship. He plans to pursue a degree in medicine.
On the trail, Batty was the 2011 West Coast Conference individual cross country champion in his first season in the conference. As a junior, Batty won the national championship in the indoor mile, while running the anchor leg on the distance medley team that won the NCAA title.
In the community, Batty spent time as a volunteer tutor, a guest speaker, and participated with his cross country teammates in youth fireside events in competition host cities. Batty served as a Missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, and he was also the chair of the Service Committee of a local student church congregation.
KIM HILL, PEPPERDINE UNIVERSITY, VOLLEYBALL
Kim Hill graduated from Pepperdine University this spring with a 3.40 grade point average as a Religion major. A three-time member of the West Coast Conference Volleyball All-Academic Team, Hill also earned three placements on the WCC Commissioner's Honor Roll and was a finalist for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award.
On the court, Hill was a three-time All-American who participated in the NCAA Tournament two times. The West Coast Conference Player of the Year in 2011, Hill led the Waves on a run to the NCAA Elite Eight in indoor, while helping lift Pepperdine to a national title in sand volleyball. She ranks sixth all-time in Pepperdine annals in both blocks and hitting percentage.
In addition to her work in the classroom and on the court, Hill served as a team captain for both the indoor and sand volleyball teams at Pepperdine. She participated in Pepperdine Project Serve, as well as a volleyball clinic in inner-city Los Angeles and taking time to read to students at a local elementary school.
TANYA SCHMIDT, SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY, VOLLEYBALL
Tanya Schmidt graduated from Santa Clara University with a 3.97 grade point average as an English major, minoring in both Classical Studies and Religious Studies. A member of the Santa Clara Honors Program and a three-time member of the WCC Commissioner's Honor Roll, Schmidt plans to pursue her Master's in English and American Literature at New York University.
On the court, Schmidt was a four-year letter-winner for the Santa Clara volleyball team. She was an all-conference First Team selection as a junior, and was a candidate for the Lowe's Senior CLASS award in 2011. Schmidt served as a team captain for the Broncos as a senior.
In the community, Schmidt was one of five student leaders for the DISCOVER retreat through the University. She served as a peer educator on-campus, and took part in the Here For Kids International Project in the Dominican Republic. Schmidt was also one of two SCU students to take part in the Path to Peace Foundation's annual conference, co-sponsored by the United Nations.