Mikayla Gascich, Austin College, Women's Basketball

Mikayla Gascich, Austin College, Women's Basketball

MIKAYLA GASCICH OF AUSTIN COLLEGE, a freshman on the women's basketall team, has been selected the SCAC Character & Community Female Student-Athlete-of-the-Week for the week beginning December 14, 2015.

The SCAC honors the efforts of student-athletes who excel in the field of athletics, and also serve their campus and community.

 

It seems like these days, a lot of young people take until their college years or even beyond to develop a sense of pride in giving back to their communities and broadening their horizons enough to want to make an impact on the world around them, but that’s not the case with Gascich. The freshman women’s basketball player from Liberty, Missouri has long been an active part of her community, and that’s already becoming apparent in her first semester of college.

Gascich has been working toward bettering her community since before she was even in high school, let alone college, having been a volunteer at the Kid’s Club as a part of the Kansas City Irish Fest starting back in 2005. She’s been an active participant ever since, first rising to the role of Co-Chair before becoming the Kid’s Club president in 2012, a role she held until leaving for Austin College this fall. As a volunteer she helped organize supplies and prizes, and worked to set up the festivities as well as organizing work schedules and recruiting volunteers for the event.

Gascich has also been active with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, organizing a fund raising event when she was just in grade school, participating in the JDRF walk, and going throughout her community to raise funds through donations for the cause. When she moved on to high school, she spearheaded an Blood Drive effort, and has also worked with an organization called Harvesters, which collects canned goods at a local grocery store for those in need. 

The first year Kangaroo guard has also participated in Race for the Cure, and as part of the Austin College women’s basketball program, participated in the team’s annual Toys for Tots free basketball clinic for local youths in Sherman. That’s not all she’s done, though, as her work in the community has extended to picking up trash along the highway, donating her time at thrift stores, and working at food kitchens to help feed the hungry. She’s also been active in volunteering at a dog shelter back home, as well as reading to elementary school children and serving as an A+ Tutor, while participating in multiple 5Ks and fundraisers, including helping to organize the Adams Run 5K during high school to fundraise money for a fellow student battling cancer.

Samantha Haeick, a sophomore goalkeeper on the women’s soccer team, has been selected the SCAC Character & Community Female Student-Athlete-of-the-Week for the week beginning October 19, 2015.

 

The SCAC honors the efforts of student-athletes who excel in the field of athletics, and also serve their campus and community.

 

Haeick has gotten involved with the University of Dallas as she enters her second year with the institution. Despite being in-season with the soccer team, the native of Las Vegas, Nevada, serves as the Vice President of UD Society for Women, is a member of Best Buddies, Dining Services Community, Tribeta Club, and Breast Cancer Awareness Club.

 

“The Society for Women is a club here at UD where female students mentor high school students and meet with them once a week and just talk to them for an hour about anything they want to talk about,” Haeick explained.

 

Altogether, Haeick adds about 12-13 hours in a month being part of these organizations, and she also has spent the month of October as the institution promotes National Breast Cancer Awareness. This included the men’s and women’s soccer “Pink Out” matches that were on Oct. 4 against Austin College.

 

Haeick has always carried a passion for being involved in the community, as she amassed around 400 hours of community service prior to becoming a Lady Crusader. In High School at West Career and Technical Academy, her involvement with organizations included: National Honor Society, Roll Marathon, McDonald House, and Giving Grizzlies Mentorship Club – earned Presidential Service Award.

 

She also volunteered to help aid the fourth grade teach and PE teacher at Givens Elementary School (Las Vegas, Nev.), and at the Bronstein Hand Center – A shoulder/elbow, wrist and hand specialists clinic. Finally, she was a Haiti Ambassador with Students Rebuild, where she talked with students in Haiti after the 2010 Haiti earthquake.

 

“Growing up I have always wanted to get involved with the community and help others in need, so I joined a lot of clubs and organizations,” Haeick stated. “The University of Dallas offers these clubs and organizations I have a passion for, and it makes me really happy because I like helping others and making others feel good and positive about the stuff going on in their lives.”

 

Haeick is majoring in biology with a focus on pre-medicine, as she plans on being an orthopedic surgeon.