Diverse: Issues In Higher Education sponsors the Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar Awards to honor students of color who have excelled in the classroom as well as on the athletic field. Inspired by tennis legend Arthur Ashe, Jr.'s commitment to education as well as his love for the game of tennis, U.S. colleges and universities are invited to participate in this annual awards program by nominating their outstanding sports scholars. In addition to their athletic ability and academic performance, Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars demonstrate a commitment to community service and student leadership.

Male Winner

Rodrigo Blankenship - Football

School: University of Georgia
Year: Graduate Student
Major: Broadcast Journalism (undergraduate), Emerging Media (graduate)

Female Winner

Raena Eldridge - Swimming & Diving

School: Texas A&M University
Year: Senior
Major: Animal Science and Genetics

Male Sport Finalists

Dontelius Ross - Basketball

School: Jackson State University
Major: Sports Science

Aaron Boyd - Swimming

School: Virginia Tech
Year: Senior
Major: Business Information and Technology

Uriel Garcia - Soccer

School: University of Houston-Victoria
Year: Senior
Major: Kinesiology

Female Sport Finalists

Chanel Thomas - Soccer

School: University of Mississippi
Year: Senior
Major: Managerial Finance

Aashaka Desai - Golf

School: University of Delaware
Year: Senior
Major: Computer Science and Cognitive Science

Erica Ogwumike - Basketball

School: Rice University
Year: Graduate Student
Major: Kinesiology and Policy Studies

More About This Program:

As the name denotes, the annual Ashe edition is part of the magazine’s quarter-century legacy of recognizing young, outstanding minority men and women who have distinguished themselves in their academic and athletic pursuits.

In addition to their athletic ability, students named Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars must maintain a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.5, be at least a sophomore academically and be active on their campuses or in their communities.