UK Athletics to Award Full Cost-of-Attendance Scholarships
UK Athletics will award scholarships that include the full cost of attendance for student-athletes on all 22 Wildcat teams beginning with the 2015-16 season, Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart announced on Wednesday.
"We are pleased to include full cost-of-attendance scholarships and excited to offer them to both current and prospective student-athletes," Barnhart said. "I spoke in support of providing the full cost of attendance on behalf of our league last month. The passage of this legislation is an important step as we move forward in our mission to comprehensively serve UK student-athletes in the best manner possible."
In addition to fully funding the maximum amount of scholarships with tuition, fees, room, board and books, UK Athletics will provide the maximum allowable cost of attendance for all 22 sports.
"At the University of Kentucky, our steadfast commitment is to put students first in everything that we do," UK President Eli Capilouto said. "Today's announcement by UK Athletics to begin awarding full cost-of-attendance scholarships is just one more example of putting that commitment into action. Our athletics director, Mitch Barnhart, played an important leadership role on the national level, serving on the committee that recommended to the NCAA that institutions be allowed to move forward with full-cost-of-attendance policies. His voice, as always, is on the side of what's best for students. And his leadership underscores this university's resolve to always put students first."
The announcement comes after a cost-of-attendance measure allowing member institutions to supplement scholarships was passed at the NCAA convention in January. Anticipating passage of cost-of-attendance legislation, UK administrators have planned accordingly.
Awarding cost-of-attendance scholarships is the latest example of UK Athletics' commitment to serving student-athletes. In addition to providing academic support through the Center for Academic and Tutorial Services, UK Athletics continues to welcome back scholarship student-athletes who left the university in good standing to complete their undergraduate degrees.
Current and former UK student-athletes have received their degrees at unprecedented rates in recent years. The athletics department has broken or tied the school record for graduation rate every year since the NCAA's Graduation Success Rate was introduced in 2005.
Thirty-one current and former student-athletes graduated as part of December 2014 commencement ceremonies after 63 graduated in May. UK student-athletes have also posted cumulative grade-point averages of 3.0 or better in five consecutive semesters.