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Biology, Psychology Majors Among FAR Academic Excellence Award Winners

by Jake Most

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 24, 2013) — Seven Kentucky Wildcats – Khristina Blajkevitch, Caitlin Ciokajlo, Ashley Frazier, Jonathan Keltner, Shelby Kennard, Megan Moir and Chelsea Oswald – have been recognized with the 1A Faculty Athletics Representatives organization’s Academic Excellence Awards.

Individuals had to maintain a minimum 3.8 cumulative GPA and have competed for at least two years of intercollegiate athletics in a sport sponsored by a Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly known as Division 1A) conference to qualify for the awards.

Joe Fink, UK’s Faculty Athletics Representative and Professor of Pharmacy, noted that this national recognition is significant for several reasons.

“In addition to recognizing academic excellence as indicated by achieving an outstanding GPA, the award emphasizes the skill these outstanding individuals have displayed in juggling the sometimes competing time demands of outstanding academics and highly active intercollegiate athletic careers,” Fink said.

The 1A FAR is an organization of faculty athletics representatives at NCAA Division I institutions in the FBS. The organization seeks to advocate for effective interaction and academic and fiscal balance between the institution's academic mission and its intercollegiate athletics program.

UK’s 2013 FAR Academic Excellence Award Winners

Khristina Blajkevitch – Communication, Women's Tennis

Blajkevitch graduated early in May 2013 with a bachelor of arts degree in communication, with a minor in political science, after just three years of college. She was named to the UK Frank G. Ham Society of Character. Her academic counselor described her as “a self-starter and one who takes initiative.” In the community, she spent time serving at the Hope Lodge and with the Salvation Army and God’s Pantry. On the court, Blajkevitch competed in multiple singles positions. In doubles, she paired with teammate Jessica Stiles to earn a ranking as high as No. 34 in the nation. Blajkevitch hopes to pursue a professional career in tennis and eventually attend law school.

Caitlyn Ciokajlo – Kinesiology, Gymnastics

Ciokajlo graduated in 2013 after helping lead the UK gymnastics program’s renaissance. She was inducted into the Frank G. Ham Society of Character in 2012, was a 2012 Academic All-America and was named to the Southeastern Conference Academic Honor Roll multiple times. Ciokajlo also received the UK gymnastics team’s Highest Grade Point Average and Hardest Worker awards after the 2010 season. She always found time for charity work, spending time with God's Pantry, the Hope Lodge and the Christian Student Fellowship.

Ashley Frazier – Marketing/Business Management, Volleyball

A 2012 Senior CLASS Award All-American and Finalist, she tallied more than 250 kills in two seasons at UK. Frazier was named UK’s Scholar-Athlete of the Year at 2013’s CATSPY Awards. She was named to the 2012 CoSIDA Academic All-District team, the 2011 NCAA Regional All-Tournament team, 2011 All-SEC Second Team and the 2011 CoSIDA Academic All-District team. She was also a one-time SEC Offensive Player of the Week winner.

Jonathan Keltner – Finance/Business Management, Swimming and Diving

Keltner was the UK 2013 Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year at the CATSPY Awards. He balanced a 3.95/4.00 GPA as a business management and finance major, while competing as a scholarship athlete with the Swim Team in butterfly and backstroke events, and remaining an actively involved member of the community.

Shelby Kennard – Psychology, Track and Field

Completed her time at UK as one of the program’s greatest pole vaulters. She is the school record-holder indoors and was once the UK record holder outdoors. Kennard was an SEC Championship Meet scorer both indoors and outdoors in 2011. She appeared on the SEC Academic Honor Roll every season as a Wildcat. She also made UK Athletics Director’s Honor Roll each semester at UK. In 2012 she was named to the SEC Community Service Team, was named to UK’s prestigious Frank G. Ham Society of Character. She graduated in 2013 with a degree in Psychology.

Megan Moir – Accounting/Marketing, Women’s Golf

Megan earned the UK Community Service Award at the 2012 and 2013 CATSPY Awards. As the 2012-13 Brad Davis SEC Female Community Service Leader of the Year, she received a $10,000 post-graduate scholarship, provided by the SEC. Moir graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor of science degree in accounting and marketing in May 2012, and earned a master’s degree in sports leadership in May 2013. She was a team captain, a two-time Academic All-American and member of both the SEC Academic Honor Roll and the UK Athletics Director’s Honor Roll. A member of the SEC Community Service Team, Moir was inducted into Kentucky’s prestigious Frank G. Ham Society of Character. She participated in a service trip to Ethiopia with other University of Kentucky student-athletes in the summer of 2012. Moir organized and planned a program called Dodging Homeless in Ethiopia and has been a part of similar projects in the Ramona Gardens Housing Project and the Faith in Christ Community Center in Los Angeles. Moir was president of Kentucky’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and was heavily involved in Athletes in Action. She performed more than 700 hours of community service in the Lexington, Ky., area during her time as a student-athlete. She finished among the top 10 graduates in her accounting program in May 2012.

Chelsea Oswald – Biology, Track and Field/Cross Country

Oswald was the 2012-13 SEC McWhorter Scholar-Athlete of Year, for which she received a $10,000 post-graduate scholarship. On the track, she was a two-time SEC Champion (5 and 10k), three-time All-America and three-time All-SEC Selection. She earned the NCAA Elite-89 award in 2013 as the student-athlete with the best overall GPA at the NCAA Championships, as she graduated with a 4.0 GPA. Oswald was a member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll, the Athletics Director’s Honor Roll and the Dean’s List each semester of her collegiate career. She was a NCAA Post-Graduate Scholarship recipient as well as a nominee for the 2013 NCAA Walter Byers Scholarship. Oswald is currently pursuing a second degree, in psychology, as she maintains another season of track and field eligibility. She plans to attend physical therapy school.

MEDIA CONTACT:  Jake Most, 859-257-3838