Acadia’s Alana Fairfax wins 2014 James Bayer Memorial Scholarship Award

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by Jess Burns

April 1, 2014, HALIFAX, N.S. (ISN) – At a special presentation during Acadia University’s Fred G. Kelly Athletic Awards Ceremony this evening, Atlantic University Sport announced that Axewomen soccer athlete Alana Fairfax is the 2014 recipient of the 28th annual James Bayer Memorial Scholarship Award presented by PepsiCo Beverages Canada.

Mr. Phil Currie, executive director of Atlantic University Sport was on hand to make the presentation.

“I have come to know Alana well as a student-athlete and, more importantly, as a person,” said Acadia director of athletics Kevin Dickie. “She is a focused and intense individual who exhibits a balance of sportsmanship and sensitivity. Alana invests many hours into volunteering for department, university, community and casual fundraising initiatives. As well as being a member of our Acadia Axewomen soccer team, she balances all components of university life and has been as invaluable member of our Acadia family.”

Fairfax, a fourth-year midfielder and defender from Somerset, N.S., has served as the Axewomen soccer team captain for the past two years. She has excelled both on and off the field during her time at Acadia. 

In addition to being a two-time winner of the AUS women’s soccer student-athlete community service award, Fairfax also took home the national honour in 2012. In 2011, she was named Acadia women’s soccer rookie of the year and in 2013, she earned Acadia women’s soccer MVP honours.

Axewomen soccer head coach Amit Batra credits Fairax in large part for his team’s turnaround in recent years. “During Alana’s time with the soccer program, she had an instrumental role in not only leading the team from last place to second place, but also in changing the culture of our entire program,” he said. “Alana is without a doubt one of, and quite possibly the, most involved student at Acadia University when you consider her commitments to excellence in athletics, extracurricular community engagement and her exceptional academic performance.”

Fairfax boasts a 3.8 overall GPA and is also a student director of the Acadia S.M.I.L.E. (Sensory Motor Instructional Learning Experience) program in Wolfville as well as the co-chair of team recruitment and retention for Acadia Relay for Life.

This year, Fairfax began volunteering weekly with the Cardiac Rehab program, monitoring and assisting workout sessions for participants living with or at risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

Progressing in her role with the Acadia Global Medical Brigades (GMB) which she has been active with since 2011, she is now the vice-president of medical for the organization. GMB is a student-led global health and sustainable development organization. The Acadia chapter organizes yearly missions in Honduras.

Fairfax’s responsibilities include contacting pharmacies for medications, working with Health Partners International and other suppliers to acquire medication, sorting and keeping track of medical supplies and working with pharmacists in both Honduras and Canada to organize transportation and required medications for the trip.

Furthermore, Fairfax served as an assistant coach for the track and field Special Olympics team this past summer, has volunteered regularly at the Wolfville Nursing Home for the past three years and is an active member of the Acadia Players Association.

Each year, the 11 AUS member schools nominate one student-athlete for this prestigious award. As this year’s recipient, Fairfax receives a $1,000 scholarship.

Also nominated were Cape Breton’s Karolyne Blain, Dalhousie’s Anna von Maltzahn, Memorial’s Angela Peddle, Moncton’s Stéphanie Doiron, Mount Allison’s Emily Byrne, UNB’s Ben Shutron, UPEI’s Cole MacMillan, StFX’s Matthew Cole Grbavac, Sienna Cooke from Saint Mary’s and Katie Brewster from St. Thomas University. Each of the nominees receive a $500 scholarship award.

The James Bayer Memorial Scholarship Award was established in 1985 and is awarded annually to an outstanding student-athlete in Atlantic University Sport for excellence in academics, athletics, leadership, sportsmanship and citizenship.

James Bayer taught education and physical education at both high school and university levels. He served as supervisor and consultant for the Nova Scotia Department of Culture, Recreation and Fitness.

At Acadia University, he served as dean of recreation and physical education and as director of athletics from 1978-1985. As an administrator in the AUAA and the CIAU, he was a key player in the establishment of intercollegiate athletic policy.

This memorial scholarship is the most prestigious award offered annually by Atlantic University Sport.

Previous recipients the James Bayer Memorial Scholarship Award:

1987 – Greg Berry, StFX University, Soccer; Caroline Lulham, Mount Allison University, Volleyball
1988 – Gunnhildur Baldursson, Acadia University, Soccer
1989 – Jackie Wong, Mount Allison University, Volleyball / Soccer
1990 – Augy Jones, St. Francis Xavier University, Basketball
1991 – Heather Morrison, University of Prince Edward Island, Field Hockey
1992 – Keith Donovan, Dalhousie University, Basketball
1993 – David Sykes, Saint Mary’s University, Football
1994 – Kathy McNally, University of Prince Edward Island, Field Hockey
1995 – Scott Bagnell, Dalhousie University, Volleyball
1996 – Carla Edwards, Mount Allison University, Volleyball
1997 – Chris Diamond, University of Prince Edward Island, Soccer
1998 – Peter Benoite, Memorial University of Newfoundland, Basketball
1999 – Jan Trojanowski, Acadia University, Basketball
2000 – Kristen Lewis, Dalhousie University, Cross Country
2001 – Jillian MacDonald, Dalhousie University, Basketball
2002 – Louis Poirier, Université de Moncton, Track & Field
2003 – Dan Tudin, Dalhousie University, Hockey
2004 – Eric Gillis, St. Francis Xavier University, Cross Country
2005 – Adrienne Power, Dalhousie University, Track & Field
2006 – David Chant, Saint Mary’s University, Hockey
2007 – Colin Sinclair, University of New Brunswick, Hockey
2008 – Katherine Quackenbush, Memorial University of Newfoundland, Basketball
2009 – Isabelle Miles, University of New Brunswick, Soccer
2010 – Alex Legge, Dalhousie University, Basketball
2011 – Jacob Kilpatrick, University of New Brunswick, Volleyball
2012 – Daniel You, Dalhousie University, Volleyball
2013 – Rebecca Haworth, Dalhousie University, Track & Field
2014 – Alana Fairfax, Acadia University, Soccer

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