Two former Auburn student athletes are among six finalists for the 2012 Walter Byers Postgraduate Scholarship, the NCAA's highest academic award: 2010 COSAM honors graduate in chemistry Dan Mazzaferro; and Mary "Katy" Frierson, women's soccer, who graduated in 2011 from the College of Liberal Arts. Mazzaferro was a member of the Auburn men’s swimming and diving team and is also a 2011 graduate from the College of Business. He was a three-time SEC champion diver and the SEC Male Diver of the Year in 2009 and 2011. A native of Cheshire, Conn., Mazzaferro is a seven-time All-American who participated in the 2007 and 2009 World University Games and was a United States Olympic Trials finalist in 2008. A Rhodes Scholar finalist in 2011 and 2012, Mazzaferro graduated from Auburn with a 3.92 grade point average in chemistry and was a two-time SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Mazzaferro was a finalist for the Byers Postgraduate Scholarship in 2010 and 2011, and is a four-time College Swimming Coaches Association of America Academic All-American. Currently studying medicine, Mazzaferro is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Kappa Phi, National Society of Leadership and Success, Sigma Alpha Pi, Golden Key International Honor Society, Delta Epsilon Iota and National Society of Collegiate Scholars.
"It is a tremendous honor to be named a finalist for the Walter Byers Scholarship," Mazzaferro said. "The experiences and opportunities I had as an NCAA Division I student-athlete, have positively impacted me and will remain a part of me throughout my life. I am grateful for the service of Walter Byers and the thousands of other NCAA coaches and staff who have created, and continue to improve, an environment that encourages excellence in academics, athletics, and service."
The Byers Scholarships were established in 1988 to recognize the contributions of former NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. Recipients must have at least a 3.5 grade-point average, demonstrate evidence of superior character and leadership, and show that participation in athletics has been a positive influence on their personal and intellectual development.
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