Student Receives National Tennis Award

Danielle Calbeck Named ITA NAIA Arthur Ashe Award Winner

May. 19, 2011 By Jeff Hoffman

Biola junior Danielle Calbeck recently earned a significant national tennis honor by being named the winner of the 2011 Women's Arthur Ashe, Jr. Leadership & Sportsmanship Award by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association.

"She inspires others by the way she lives her life, putting the needs of others before those of her own,” said head coach Dee Henry. “Her life of service is similar to the ideals of Arthur Ashe and that is why she is such a good fit for this award."

The Intercollegiate Tennis Association honors a male and a female tennis player from NCAA Division I, II, III, NAIA, and JUCO in four categories at both the regional and national level. The awards are Player to Watch, Rookie of the Year, Senior of the Year, and the Arthur Ashe Jr. Collegiate Award for Sportsmanship and Leadership.

"My whole time at Biola I have gotten on myself for not playing more tournaments in high school and when I was younger, but by receiving this award, God definitely had a plan for me in coming to Biola and playing tennis," said Calbeck. "From it, I feel like I can make an impact without being the best player on the team or on GSAC.  I have seen God's eternal plan with giving me the ability to play tennis."

The recipients of the national award winners for the Arthur Ashe Jr. Collegiate Award for Sportsmanship and Leadership are flown to New York City by ITA/USTA and assist at Arthur Ashe Kids Day at the Billie Jean King Tennis Center during the US Open. In the past they also had a luncheon with the former Mayor of New York City, president of USTA, and the director of ITA, then were treated to a match.

Calbeck has been a three-year team representative of Biola's BAM (Biola Athletic Ministry) program, in which athletes gather with the intent of ministering to each other and holding one another accountable. Her coach believes "that's the kind of consistency that the new players need to see." Through BAM, athletes focus on service not only on the Biola campus, but also the surrounding community.

In addition to BAM, Calbeck participates in the Event Society at Biola, in which a group of students help plan and run events on campus. With volunteer experiences such as serving as an intern for the junior high students at her church and creating service opportunities for a group on a San Diego mission trip, Calbeck also was a natural when given the annual opportunity to work with those suffering from spinal bifida.

Biola also hosts an annual Campus Kids Day event, welcoming kids from the community to play with and learn tennis from collegiate athletes. These opportunities are what this Ashe winner looks forward to -- learning how to connect with students and those in need.

Written by Jeff Hoffman, Sports Information Director. Jenna Bartlo, Media Relations Coordinator, can be reached at 562.777.4061. 

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