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Meryn Kennedy Is An Exemplary Image Of A Student-Athlete

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Meryn Kennedy Is An Exemplary Image Of A Student-Athlete

Postby PonyPride » Fri Jun 19, 2020 5:49 pm

From SMUMustangs.com:

Meryn Kennedy Is An Exemplary Image Of An Ideal Student-Athlete

When coaches describe the ideal student-athlete, they generally use terms like excellent student, hard worker, selfless, good sport, leader. They could save time, and sum it up in two simple words: Meryn Kennedy. When the 6-3 middle blocker takes the floor in late August to start the 2020 volleyball season, there will be a word next to her name that also describes the ideal student-athlete: Graduate.

Kennedy graduated in May with a degree in advertising and fashion media from the SMU Meadows School of the Arts. The achievement is more than just another bullet point on her long list of awards, highlights and accomplishments.

As a freshman in 2016, Kennedy was redshirted. She was healthy and trained with the team, but watched every match from the sideline. In practice, however, she did everything but watch. Her skills and efforts pushed senior middle blockers Janelle Giordano and Kristen Stehling to all-conference honors. The Mustangs went on to win a second straight conference championship, and Kennedy was in the middle of the celebration after the program's first NCAA Tournament win, a 3-0 sweep against Texas A&M.

Then she got her chance to play. In 2017, Kennedy led the Mustangs with 112 blocks, averaging 1.08 per set. She has averaged more than a block per set in each of her three seasons, and ranks ninth at SMU with 334 career blocks. Last season, she led SMU to the American Athletic Conference West Division crown. She anchored a defense that held opponents to a .188 attack percentage, second in the league. She averaged 1.09 blocks per set, her best season to date and eighth in the conference.

But it isn't just her on-court success that makes her the ideal representation of a student-athlete. Kennedy was recently elected to the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee Executive Board. A multi-year member of the committee, Kennedy will serve as the Vice President for External Affairs and liaison to the Diversity and Inclusion Council.

In May, Kennedy was honored with the Face of the Temerlin Advertising Institute award. The Face of TAI award is given annually to the student who best represents the institute within the Meadows College, SMU and the advertising industry. In February, Kennedy was selected to compete with fellow SMU students in the National Student Advertising Competition. The team won Best Media Campaign and finished second overall.

In the summer of 2018, Kennedy joined a group of SMU student-athletes on a service trip to Belize. While there, the small group built a cement basketball/volleyball court in a rural village with Courts for Kids. In 2019, she was one of a few SMU advertising students who traveled to the Nike campus in Oregon. While there, they saw firsthand how Nike's advertising division creates its campaigns.

While she has already achieved her undergraduate degree, her career at SMU remains unfinished. As Kennedy prepares for her final season on the Hilltop, the goal is to build on the success that she helped her teammates achieve during her first season on the Hilltop. Then she can start turning million-dollars sports figures into billion-dollar marketing campaigns.
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