Gardner-Webb Student-Athlete Honored for Academic Success

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Matt Yelverton (’15) Continues Academic Pursuits in a Physician Assistant Studies Program

Golf helped provide Matt Yelverton (’15) a course on which to pursue a college undergraduate education, and the sport’s Big South Conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year plans to continue his academic pursuits in a Physician Assistant Studies program.

Yelverton received the prestigious George A. Christenberry Award, which is named for a conference co-founder and annually honors the male and female student-athletes who attain the highest cumulative grade point averages (GPA) in their sports.

Also a GWU Senior Scholastic Award recipient with a 4.0 career GPA at Gardner-Webb, Yelverton spent numerous hours on the golf course in middle and high school, in hopes of preparing himself to play for a college team.

After that dream became a reality, he said his collegiate student-athlete experience was nerve-racking at times but ultimately rewarding. He shared that time management, often completing assignments ahead of time, and strong relationships with accessible faculty members were huge factors in his ability to succeed on the course and in the classroom.

“Being able to go to class and actually get to know your professors goes a long way in effectively learning the course material,” Yelverton assessed. “Additionally, because Gardner-Webb is a Christian university, I was constantly in an atmosphere that encouraged me to grow in my faith. I experienced a number of challenges in my four years as an undergraduate student, but my faith allowed me to press on and lean on God, which had a tremendous impact on my academic and athletic successes. Taking on the responsibilities of being a student-athlete allowed me to mature into the man I have become.”

Located in Boiling Springs, N.C., Gardner-Webb University’s purpose is to advance the Kingdom of God through Christian higher education by preparing graduates for professional and personal success, instilling in them a deep commitment to service and leadership, and equipping them for well-rounded lives of lasting impact, Pro Deo et Humanitate (For God and Humanity).