FLUSHING MEADOWS, N.Y. - Former College of Charleston women's tennis standout Caroline Newman (Greensboro, N.C.) was the NCAA Division I women's recipient of the 2012 Arthur Ashe Jr. National Leadership and Sportsmanship Award and recently honored at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Awards Luncheon hosted by the United States Tennis Association (USTA) held in conjunction with Arthur Ashe Kid's Day on Aug. 25 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.
Jon Vegosen, Chairman of the Board and President of the USTA, David A Benjamin, ITA Executive Director, and David Dinkins, former Mayor of New York City and a member of the USTA Board of Directors, were on hand to present the awards to each national recipient which also included NCAA Division I men's award winner Ryan Thacher of Stanford.
Newman recorded more than 150 career victories in singles and doubles combined, helping the Cougars to four consecutive Southern Conference championship titles. Off the court, she took part in a Heart for Africa Medical Mission trip to Swaziland, Africa, traveling to rural villages and treating over 400 patients during a five-day span. Newman also participated in an inner city tennis program, introducing tennis to economically-challenged children and mentored youths in the Win4Life motivational program.
In addition to volunteering at the Ronald McDonald House, Newman helped organize a dog show that raised money for Pet Helpers, a local animal shelter in Charleston, S.C. She graduated this past May summa cum laude with a bachelor's degree in psychology and a perfect 4.0 grade-point average as a member of the CofC Honors College. Her older sister, Catherine, was a national Ashe Award winner for Vanderbilt in 2010.
"It was such an honor to be awarded the Arthur Ashe Award," said Newman, who traveled to New York City for the first time and was able to watch the first day of tournament play at the US Open on Tuesday. "I met the other award recipients and it was amazing to see how accomplished everyone was and how we shared a common love for tennis and community service. I had a wonderful experience. We were able to work with young, Arthur Ashe Essay and Art award winners and showed them how tennis can impact your life and lead to a scholarship to attend college in the future."
Since her time at CofC, Newman has volunteered with local hospitals in her hometown with aspirations of applying to medical school in the near future. This summer, she shadowed the operating room at Moses Cone Hospital and is currently coaching soccer and substitute teaching at her former middle school, Canterbury School in Greensboro. She is also in the process of serving as a research assistant for a local area physician to gain more experience in the medical field.
The ITA/Arthur Ashe Jr. Award for Leadership and Sportsmanship Award takes into account a player's tennis accomplishments, scholastic achievements and extracurricular endeavors. Just as Arthur Ashe was a great player and humanitarian, this award (which dates to 1984) recognizes players who excelled on and off the court during their college careers. Sportsmanship, leadership and character are also important criteria.