Feb. 22, 2017
NOTRE DAME, Ind. — For the second straight year, four University of Notre Dame student-athletes have earned the Atlantic Coast Conference’s Weaver-James-Corrigan Award, part of the ACC’s postgraduate scholarship program. Football’s Corey Robinson, women’s fencing’s Lee Kiefer and women’s soccer’s Kaleigh Olmsted have been selected as scholarship recipients, while men’s lacrosse senior Sergio Perkovic was named an honorary award winner.
The Weaver-James-Corrigan postgraduate scholarships are presented to selected student-athletes who intend to pursue a graduate degree following completion of their undergraduate requirements. Robinson, Kiefer and Olmsted will receive $5,000 toward their graduate educations and are honored because of their performances both in the classroom and their respective sport, while demonstrating exemplary contact in the community.
The Weaver-James-Corrigan Honorary Award goes to those student-athletes who plan to pursue professional careers in their chosen sports following graduation.
The four Notre Dame honorees are among 54 ACC student-athletes selected as postgraduate scholarship recipients.
The Weaver-James-Corrigan Award is named in honor of the late Jim Weaver and Bob James, as well as Gene Corrigan, the ACC's first three commissioners (Corrigan also served as director of athletics at Notre Dame from 1981-87).
With this year’s four Notre Dame honorees, the Irish have produced 15 Weaver-James-Corrigan postgraduate scholarship recipients in four years as a conference member.
Pre-Professional Studies; Women’s Fencing; Versailles, Ky.
Lee Kiefer is a three-time NCAA Champion, two-time Olympian and consistently ranks among the best women’s foilists in the world. Kiefer, who won the 2015 ACC Women’s Foil Championship and was named the Championship MVP that year as well, was also named the 2015 ACC Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Kiefer is just one of three student-athletes in Notre Dame history with three or more individual national titles, standing as one of the most decorated athletes in school history.
Pre-Professional Studies & Art Studio; Women’s Soccer; The Woodlands, Texas
A three-year starter for the Irish, Olmsted capped her solid Notre Dame career with a four-goal, five-assist 2016 campaign and was named to the All-ACC First Team, ACC All-Tournament Team and All-ACC Academic Team. A first-time captain in 2016, Olmsted made her presence felt beyond the stat sheet, with the capacity to float between forward and midfield and frustrate opponents with her crafty one-on-one abilities. A two-time participant in Notre Dame’s Rosenthal Leadership Academy and a member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Council, Olmsted has also been active in the community, most recently working on her own fundraiser benefitting the National Eating Disorders Association called NoBody Is Perfect.
Program of Liberal Studies with a sustainability minor; Football; San Antonio, Texas
The University of Notre Dame Student Body President in 2016-17 -- the first football student-athlete in school history to hold that honor -- Corey Robinson is simply one of the most accomplished student-athletes in school history. A first-team Capital One CoSIDA First-Team Academic All-American in 2014, Robinson was the first sophomore at a NCAA Division I institution to earn first-team Academic All-America honors since 2008 and only the fourth sophomore to attain first-team status since 2002. Robinson not only earned a degree from the prestigious program of liberal studies, but also added a minor in sustainability, and boasted a 3.836 cumulative grade-point average. He was named to the dean's list following each of his eight semesters on campus. Robinson captured the 2015 Francis Patrick O’Connor Award, which honored male and female Notre Dame student-athletes who best display the total embodiment of the true spirit of the University as exemplified by their contributions to their respective teams. A member of Notre Dame’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), Robinson chaired the Student-Athlete Advisory Council’s IrishOn3 initiative. He participated in the Rosenthal Leadership Academy and served on the Notre Dame Student Government Executive Cabinet, assisting the University’s International and Undergraduate Admissions Office.
Finance; Men’s Lacrosse; Bloomfield Hills, Mich.
In three seasons at Notre Dame, Sergio Perkovic has earned first team All-American honors in each of the last two years on the team. As a junior (2016), he was named to the All-ACC Team and All-ACC Academic Team. Perkovic has led the Irish to an appearance in the NCAA Championship final (2014), the NCAA Championship semifinals (2015) and NCAA Championship quarterfinals (2016) as well as the 2014 ACC Tournament title. The senior is a two-time All-ACC selection (2015, 2016) and three-time ACC All-Academic Team recipient (2014, 2015, 2016). The midfielder has started every game (48) of his Irish career and has scored 88 goals, which ranks ninth in program history. Perkovic is the only men’s lacrosse player to receive the scholarship.
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Joanne Norell, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2014 and coordinates communications efforts for the Notre Dame women's soccer, men's tennis, women's tennis and fencing programs. Norell is a 2011 graduate of Purdue University, where she earned a bachelor's degree in mass communication, and earned her master's degree in sports industry management from Georgetown University in 2013.