May 20, 2003
Notre Dame, Ind. - Notre Dame hockey defenseman, Neil Komadoski (Jr., Chesterfield, Mo.), is among a group of 302 Division I, II and III student-athletes who have been identified as leaders on their campuses and in their communities who will participate in the 2003 NCAA Leadership Conference. The conference will be held at the Coronado Springs Resort and Walt Disney World Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., from May 25-29.
The NCAA Leadership Conference is one of the largest non-competitive gatherings of NCAA student-athletes. The conference is designed to enhance student-athletes' leadership and communication skills and to enable them to become more effective leaders and motivators when they return to their campuses.
Komadoski was selected from a pool of 1,172 nomination forms that were submitted by college and university officials who have CHAMPS/Life Skills programs at their schools. At Notre Dame, Komadoski is a member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC) and has been involved in the council's community service programs.
Student-athletes attending the leadership conference reside in the United States and abroad. They represent Divisions I, II and III, and fall, winter and spring sports. This year's group of participants will represent 22 sports: baseball, basketball, crew, cross country, diving, equestrian, field hockey, ice hockey, football, golf, gymnastics, lacrosse, rifle, alpine skiing, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, track and field, volleyball, water polo and wrestling.
The junior defenseman had his best season for the Irish in 2002-03 when he had one goal and career-highs in assists (23) and points (24) to lead all Notre Dame defenders in scoring. His 23 assists were the most by an Irish blueliner since the 1987-88 season.
A 2002 draft choice of the Ottawa Senators, Komadoski was one of three Central Collegiate Hockey Association players picked to participate in the NCAA Leadership Conference and just one of four hockey players nationally to attend the conference. Joining him from the CCHA are Miami's Mike Kompon and Bowling Green's D'Arcy McConvey.
During the five-day event, student-athletes have the opportunity to discuss a variety of topics, which include the demands and expectations of student-athletes; inclusion education; international student-athlete experiences; recruiting visits; student-athlete responsibility; party behaviors; trust gaps within intercollegiate athletics; and sportsmanship.
A total of 48 coaches, athletics administrators and program facilitators will join the student-athletes at the conference. In addition, 24 members representing the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) also will participate in the discussion sessions and group activities. SAAC provides feedback to NCAA committees and councils regarding student welfare issues and is considered the "voice" of the student-athlete within the NCAA governance structure.
Following the leadership conference, the student-athletes will be asked to share their experiences and topic discussions with their campus SAAC, as well as other campus leaders. The participants are also asked to develop a self-directed project that will address an issue on their campus or in their community, and implement the plan when they return to their campuses.