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Two Sun Devils selected as recipients of the NCAA Spring Postgraduate Award

June 24, 2009

Two Sun Devils were honored this week as Jessica Mapes and T.J. Bellama were both named as recipients of the 2009 NCAA Spring Postgraduate Scholarship. The NCAA awards up to 174 postgraduate scholarships annually, 87 for men and 87 for women. The scholarships are awarded to student-athletes who excel academically and athletically and who are in their final year of intercollegiate athletics competition.

The one-time grants of $7,500 each are awarded for fall sports, winter sports and spring sports. Each sports season (fall, winter and spring), there are 29 scholarships available for men and 29 scholarships available for women. The scholarships are one-time, non-renewable grants.

Bellama and Mapes join Sarah Stevens of the ASU Women's Track as 2008-2009 recipients of the NCAA Postgraduate Award. TJ Bellama, a former stand-out on the Men's Tennis Team where in the 2008 season he finished second in the Pac-10 doubles tournament with partner Matt Brooklyn, where they finished the year ranked 44th in the nation with a 23-9 record on the year.

Jessica Mapes, a senior outfielder on the ASU softball team finished her career this season after being an integral part of the 2008 NCAA Championship team. Batting over .400 in the 2009 season, she hit in the lead-off spot as she helped bring the ASU Softball team to their fourth consecutive WCWS appearance. Mapes was also a finalist for the 2009 Lowe's Softball Senior Class Award.

The NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship was created in 1964 to promote and encourage postgraduate education by rewarding the Association's most accomplished student-athletes through their participation in NCAA championship and/or emerging sports. Athletics and academic achievements, as well as campus involvement, community service, volunteer activities and demonstrated leadership, are evaluated.  An equitable approach is employed in reviewing each applicant's nomination form to provide opportunity to all student-athlete nominees to receive the postgraduate award, regardless of sport, division, gender or race.  In maintaining the highest broad-based standards in the selection process, the program aims to reward those individuals whose dedication and effort are reflective of those characteristics necessary to succeed and thrive through postgraduate study in an accredited graduate degree program.