During the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) National Swimming and Diving Championship week at Oklahoma City Community College (OCCC), athletes will participate in outreach events as part of the NAIA Champions of Character program. These events allow student athletes to give back to the community that hosts the event.
NAIA swimmers and divers will compete March 4-7 at OCCC’s Aquatic Center, 7777 S. May Ave., while Champion of Character events will be March 3-4.
The Champions of Character program is designed to help instill values that build character so that students, coaches and parents know and do the right thing on and off the field.
Research shows that the longer a student participates in a sport, their social reasoning (sacrificing for the good of the team) rises, while their moral reasoning skills (doing what is fair, just, honest and noble) decline. Champions of Character helps athletes find balance by keeping five core values: integrity, respect, responsibility, sportsmanship and servant leadership.
Students learn to understand how the values play out during practice and competition. Coaches are taught how to intentionally define, model, shape and reinforce the values through coaching and mentoring. Parents learn how their behavior is key to supporting their athletes.
2015 Champion of Character Events:
â€¢ Meet and Greet with Special Olympic Athletes – NAIA athletes will visit with Special Olympic Athletes from the local area during a meet and greet session scheduled 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 3, at the Best Western Saddleback Inn and Conference Center, 4300 SW 3rd Street.
â€¢ Veteran Center Visit – Athletes will travel to the Oklahoma City VA Medical Center, 921 NE 13th Street, to meet and brighten the day of veterans currently staying at the facility. The visit is scheduled 10 a.m. to noon Wednesday, March 4.
The NAIA is the governing body for athletics programs at its nearly 300 colleges and universities throughout the United States and Canada. Since 1937, the NAIA has administered programs and championships in proper balance with the overall educational experience. In 2000, the NAIA reaffirmed its purpose to enhance the character-building aspects of sport. Today, the NAIA strengthens its commitment to student-athletes and enriches their college experience by supporting academic achievement and character development.
For more information about the 2015 NAIA Champions of Character events, call (405) 682-1611 ext. 7662.
To learn more about the 2015 NAIA Swimming and Diving National Championships, or to watch the event live, visit /naia. Follow the 2015 competition at OCCC on Twitter at #NAIASWIM.