BEMIDJI, Minn. – Bemidji State University senior Carolyn Smith has been selected to receive the 2020 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Elite 18 Award for soccer. She becomes the second Beaver soccer student-athlete to earn the award, following Anna Fobbe in 2017, and the fourth BSU student-athlete to receive the honor.
The Elite 18 awards is given annually to a student-athlete in each of the league's sponsored 18 sports who owns the highest GPA and has completed the most credits.
Smith, a Grand Forks, N.D. native, holds 4.0 grade point average as a double major in biology and chemistry at BSU. She is a three-time NSIC All-Academic Team of Excellence recipient and earned the D2 ADA Academic Achievement Award in 2019. During her career, she has appeared in 35 matches for the Beavers, including seven in 2019, where she logged 63 minutes.
“Carolyn represents everything that is right about college athletics,” said BSU Head Soccer Coach Jim Stone. “In Carolyn, you see the model student-athlete. The student-athlete who as defined, places an enormous priority on scholastic excellence while still having the discipline, focus, and drive to be a high-level athlete.” Stone added, “Carolyn is a person of character who has always carried herself with the understanding that others are watching and as we watched, we witnessed hard-work, kindness and growth. We witnessed an incredible soccer player and student who made us a better team and made us better people.”
Smith follows Allyna Storms, the NSIC’s 2020 outdoor track and field honoree, Fobbe, and Ben Skaar, of the BSU men’s golf team, who earned the award in 2017, as the only BSU student-athletes to earn an NSIC Elite 188 Award.
As part of the NSIC 25th Anniversary celebration, the NSIC Elite 18 Award was instituted to recognize the true essence of the student-athlete by honoring the individual who has reached the pinnacle of competition at the NSIC Championship level in his or her sport, while also achieving the highest academic standard among his or her peers.
Nestled in Northern Minnesota’s wooded region and located on the shore of Lake Bemidji, Bemidji State University sponsors 15 varsity athletic programs with NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey membership in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, while its 13 NCAA Division II programs hold membership in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).