Updated: July 22, 2013 4:56PM
Lake Forest College swimmer Becky Shaak is the Midwest Conference nominee for the NCAA Woman of the Year Award for 2013.
The award honors senior student-athletes who have distinguished themselves throughout their collegiate careers in the areas of academic achievement, athletics excellence, service and leadership.
A total of 455 female student-athletes were nominated. Of those nominees, 214 participated in Division 1, 90 participated in Division 2, and 151 (including Shaak) participated in Division 3 athletics.
Each conference selects one or two women to represent the conference. Those names are then sent to the Woman of the Year selection committee, which chooses the top 10 honorees in each division.
From among those 30 candidates, the selection committee determines the top three in each division and announces the top nine finalists in September. The NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics will then vote from among the finalists to determine the 2013 NCAA Woman of the Year.
Shaak, a senior economics and mathematics major from Vienna, Virginia, won 23 conference titles in 10 different events over the last four years. She was a four-time champion as a part of the 400-freestyle relay team and won three gold medals in the 500- and 1,650-freestyles as well as the 400-individual medley. She finished her career holding eight conference records (five individual, three relay).
Outside of the pool Shaak was a two-time member of the MWC Academic All-Conference team and is eligible for the award for her senior season.
Shaak also lent a helping hand in numerous community service and campus activities. She assisted Special Olympians the last two years when Lake Forest College hosted the Special Olympics Regional Swim Meet and she was a three-year member of the Relay for Life team. She made a significant commitment to volunteer work with the residents at Lake Forest Place, an elderly community located a few miles from campus, and to fund-raising for the Ted Mullin Hour of Power, which benefits cancer research.
Said Midwest Conference commissioner Chris Graham: “Becky is the epitome of a Midwest Conference student-athlete and an outstanding representative of the 3,000-plus student-athletes in our league.”