A local student-athlete was recognized for her contributions off the volleyball court.
Amanda Kuiper, a graduate of Huron Park secondary school, was named the recipient of the Ray Lewis Youth Community Sports Service Award.
The award is presented each year to a high-level athlete who is a post-secondary student in Hamilton, as well as a leader in the community through their involvement, commitment and volunteer work in sports.
“My journey at Mohawk (College) continues to exceed any and all expectations, and I am so grateful to have spent the past four years here,” Kuiper said of the recognition. “It is very important to me to give back to the Mohawk community in any way I can, considering it has done so much for me. I feel very honoured to have received this award.”
Kuiper, a fifth-year student at Mohawk College and captain of the women’s volleyball team, was recognized Saturday morning at the school’s breakfast of championships in a virtual presentation.
She was a lead for Mohawk College’s mental-health month initiative, as well as one of the founding members of the mountaineer athletic ambassador group. Kuiper also won the Dr. Sam Mitminger award, which is Mohawk College’s varsity valedictorian.
In addition to her community efforts, Kuiper attended a sports leadership conference in British Columbia last year.
Kuiper was part of Huron Park’s OFSAA bronze medal-winning girls’ volleyball team in 2014 She was a first-team Ontario Colleges Athletic Association all-star, an OCAA all-academic and Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association national scholar in the 2019-20 season.
“The volleyball program and I are proud of Amanda and are glad she is being recognized for her work in the community,” said Matthew Schnarr, head coach of the Mountaineers women’s volleyball. “Amanda has always been an advocate for community involvement and continuously shows up to give back. Her volunteering and advocacy around the stigma for mental health has broken down barriers for me and student athletes alike.”