Student Athlete Handbook

    Section Eight: S-A Assistance Program


      The Student-Athlete Assistance Program (SAAP) is designed to enhance the physical and psychological well-being of the student-athlete. Trained professionals in health-related fields make educational presentations to sport teams on topics such as nutrition, alcohol and drug use, stress management, sexuality, emotional problems, family difficulties, and other topics in which student-athletes indicate an interest. These professionals are also readily available to provide confidential assistance and support to individual student-athletes who experience problems which may interfere with academic and/or athletic performance.


      The SAAP is composed of members of the Intercollegiate Athletics Drug Education and Prevention Committee and other interested volunteers from the University community. This group is sympathetic to the needs of student-athletes and may assist in the identification, assessment, and referral of student problems. SAAP members include the following:

        Intercollegiate Athletics
          Doug Salmon, Head Strength Coach
          Jeff Goelz, Head Women's Swimming Coach
          Brenda McVinua, Assistant Athletic Trainer
          Ed Thompson, Head Athletic Trainer

        Student Health Service

          Muriel Narve, Medical Technologist
          Rollin Perkins, M.D.

        Wellness Center

          Barb Fijolek, Alcohol and Drug Education
          Lynn Gill, Nutrition, Weight Management, Eating Disorders

        Legal Counsel

          Martine Polynice-Jackson, Legal Issues

        Counseling Center

          Virginia Hoffman, Psychological Counseling

      The Drug Education and Prevention Committee also includes a male and female representative each year from the Student Athletic Advisory Board.


      Student-athletes seeking information or assistance should contact a coach, trainer, or other athletic department personnel. After discussion of the situation, the staff member will aid the student in contacting a member of the SAAP for further assistance. The student-athlete may want to contact a SAAP member directly. The SAAP member will discuss the situation and help each student outline a plan in regard to the problem. This plan may include a referral to the appropriate source of assistance. The SAAP member and referral sources will help provide necessary assistance and follow-up until the recommended plan has been completed.

      If a coach, family member, or another student is concerned about problems that may be interfering with a student-athlete's academic and/or athletic performance, assistance may be sought on behalf of the student. This person may want to discuss the situation with the student-athlete and suggest the SAAP, or contact a SAAP member and allow her/him to contact the student confidentially.


      To ensure the SAAP's effectiveness and protect the student's rights, the following guidelines govern the program.

      • The academic or athletic status of the student will not be jeopardized by a student seeking assistance.

      • The decision to use the SAAP should be voluntary.

      • If the student rejects a suggestion to seek assistance, it is the student's responsibility to remedy the academic or athletic performance problem, or face appropriate action.

      • If a student-athlete is already under suspension, academic probation, or participation restricted for whatever reason, the student may be required to seek assistance as a condition for reinstatement.

      • Confidentiality is of the utmost importance to protect the privacy of the student. Any details of communication between students and SAAP members or athletic department personnel may not be disclosed to any source without prior written consent of the student.

      • Unless the student consents otherwise, the person making a referral to a source of assistance at a student's request may disclose only the following information: the student's name, address, phone number, how the student was referred to the SAAP, and the reason for the referral.


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