July 30, 2014
PITTSBURGH - Recent graduate and swimmer Lauren Matevish was recently named one of six finalists for the 2014 Walter Byers Postgraduate Scholarship, which the NCAA awards annually to one male and one female student-athlete for their excellence in the classroom and potential future success.
Matevish, one of three female finalists, graduated from Pittsburgh in May with a dual degree in rehabilitation science and psychology, along with a minor in chemistry, while achieving a 3.891 grade point average.
"It is an incredibly humbling and amazing honor to be recognized as a finalist," Matevich said of her distinction. "Pitt has given me the opportunity to follow all of my passions to the fullest, and this award is truly a testament to the amazing people here. I could not have developed as a scholar-athlete without the guidance of my coaches and teachers, who made me curious, driven and ready to accomplish my goals."
Following the conclusion of her collegiate swimming career, Matevish was recognized with the prestigious Emma W. Locke Award, presented annually to a Pitt graduating senior that embodies high scholarship, character and devotion to the ideals of the University. Outside of the classroom, Matevish was extremely active on campus, serving as the co-secretary for Pitt's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) chapter and was a member of the Panther Leadership Academy.
A four-year letter winner as a distance swimmer and captain as a senior, Matevish was a four-time conference qualifier and left the program with the fifth-best performance in the 1,650 free in school history. She is also a two-time winner of the prestigious Panther Triad Award, presented to a member of the swimming and diving team that best represents Pitt's standards of commitment, teamwork and pride.
"Lauren is the kind of success story as an athlete that a coach likes to see," said head coach Chuck Knoles. "She got faster every year and along the way set a pool record, was voted captain of the team and led the way as the high-achiever in the classroom."
Matevish will continue her schooling in fall 2015, where she aspires to get her Doctor of Medicine.
"Lauren will be one of our future leaders in the field of medicine," added Knoles. "She simply has what it takes to help herself and those around her move forward."
The Walter Byers Postgraduate Scholarship was established in 1988 and is awarded to a graduating senior or graduate student at an NCAA member institution. In addition to being successful in the classroom, where nominees must have attained a GPA of at least 3.5, the candidates needed to be a varsity team member show superior character and leadership, and demonstrate participation in community service.
Karenee Demery, a women's soccer player at California State University, and Kyle Bodren, a football player at Emory and Henry College were the recipients of this year's Walter Byers Postgraduate Scholarship.