Three Hope College students have been named GTE Academic all-district honorees in the fall/winter at-large category.
Junior Elizabeth VandenBerg of Beverly Hills, Mich. (Southfield Christian HS) has been named a first team all-district honoree while senior Tom Bouwens of Zeeland, Mich. (Zeeland HS) and senior Jennifer Ernst of Westerville, Ohio (Westerville South HS) have been named to the second team.
Selection to the all-district team is the first step in being considered for GTE Academic All-America status. All-district first team honorees become eligible for Academic All-America consideration.
The GTE Academic All-America program is sponsored by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). The college division category is comprised of NCAA Division II and III and NAIA institutions. The district includes colleges in Alabama, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee.
The fall/winter at-large team recognizes athletes who competed in cross country, fencing, field hockey, gymnastics, ice hockey, rifle, skiing, soccer, swimming, water polo and wrestling.
All three Hope honorees are NCAA All-Americans, VandenBerg and Bouwens in swimming and Ernst in cross country and track.
An accounting major, VandenBerg earlier this month won the NCAA Division III national championship in the 200-yard breaststroke with a Division III record time and was third in the nation in both the 100-yard breaststroke and 200-yard individual medley. She has been an NCAA All-American 15 times in her career.
A chemistry major, Bouwens achieved NCAA All-America swimming recognition four times in his career, all in relays as a butterfly specialist. This year both the 200-yard and 400- yard medley relays were fourth in the nation. A four-year letterwinner, he was co-captain of this year's team.
An art major, Ernst achieved NCAA All-America track honors in 1999 by finishing seventh in the 10,000-meter run. Last fall she gained NCAA All-America honors in cross country by finishing 25th among 213 runners at nationals. She has been all-conference in both sports and was co-captain of the cross country team last fall.