Sophomores Felisa Sajulga and Bailor Harris recently traveled to Kansas City for a Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) conference with the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA). Taryn Torgerson, director of golf, accompanied them as the Newman University SAAC sponsor.
The conference took place Feb 5-6 in Kansas City, Missouri, at T-Shotz, a family entertainment venue. The first day of the conference was a social night. The group hung out with other SAAC representatives from different schools while playing golf and arcade games. The second day they listened to MIAA sponsors and executive members, while talking with other schools in the conference about ways to help their student-athletes.
Torgerson jumped at the opportunity to take two of her representatives to be a part of the event.
Her biggest takeaway from the conference was learning about all the opportunities student-athletes have beyond the playing field. During the presentations, they learned about jobs after college, mental health, officiating and name, image and likeness (NIL) opportunities.
“All of these were very informative and relevant to college athletics today,” said Torgerson. She was glad she got the opportunity to go and meet new people.
Sajulga, a sophomore majoring in psychology, volunteered to go because she wanted to see what the MIAA had to say about helping student-athletes.
“The biggest takeaway from the conference was the importance of our mental health and how we should prioritize it just as much as we prioritize our physical health,” Sajulga said.
Torgerson and Sajulga said they were both glad for the opportunity to go and meet new people.
“It was a lot of fun and we learned a lot,” said Torgerson with a smile.
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