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Caroline Williams Nominated for 2019 NCAA Woman of the Year Award

Caroline Williams Nominated for 2019 NCAA Woman of the Year Award

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Former Cal Poly women's tennis player Caroline Williams, who competed for the Mustangs from 2017-19, graduating earlier this month with a degree in Philosophy, has been nominated by Cal Poly as its representative for the 2019 NCAA Woman of the Year Award.

Established in 1991, the NCAA Woman of the Year award recognizes graduating female college athletes who have exhausted their eligibility and distinguished themselves in academics, athletics, service and leadership throughout their collegiate careers.

Williams played her first two years at the University of Maryland before transferring to Cal Poly for her junior and senior years. In her two years as a Mustang, Williams won a combined 15 singles and doubles matches and helped Cal Poly advance to its first Big West Tournament Semifinal match since 2010 in 2018.

She was also a strong leader off the court during her time at Cal Poly, spending much of her time volunteering and helping establish programs on campus to help the campus community and fellow student-athletes.

She volunteered as a field observer for an organization called Sea Otter Savvy which helps protect endangered species on the Central Coast. She also helped start the Cal Poly Philosophy Club and was the club's Treasurer. In addition, she was the Vice President of the Cal Poly Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and represented Cal Poly at the Big West Conference meeting.

She also founded the Cal Poly Student-Athlete Newsletter with a goal of giving fellow student-athletes advice and information and establish a platform for them to talk and learn from each other. Last but not least, she took charge of the Cal Poly Big West Coin Drive, which under her leadership raised a record amount of money in Cal Poly history to go towards the Hearst Cancer Resource Center.

Williams is one of nine members from the Big West to be nominated for this award. In total, 585 women were nominated. Next, conferences will select up to two nominees each from the pool of school nominees. Then, the Woman of the Year selection committee, made up of representatives from the NCAA membership, will choose the Top 30 honorees — 10 from each division.

The selection committee will determine the top three honorees in each division from the Top 30 and announce the nine finalists in September. From those nine finalists, the NCAA Committee on Women's Athletics then will choose the 2019 NCAA Woman of the Year.

The Top 30 honorees will be celebrated and the 2019 NCAA Woman of the Year will be named at the annual award ceremony Oct. 20 in Indianapolis.