WINTER PARK, Fla.—Barry’s Grace Collins has been selected as the Sunshine State Conference Woman of the Year nominee, the conference office announced on Monday.
Collins, who graduated in May with a dual degree in history and philosophy, carries a 3.871 cumulative grade point average in the honors program. A four-year starter in the outfield for the Bucs, she is one of the top all-time hitters in the program. She finished her career with a .363 average, 127 runs scored, 229 hits, 64 RBI and 77 stolen bases. She ranks in the Top-10 in 10 career records, including sacrifices (1st—46), hits (2nd), starts (T-4th—199), batting average (6th), runs scored (6th) and on-base percentage (8th— .410).
She helped lead the Bucs to a 138-68 record during her career. She set a school record as a junior with a 19-game hitting streak as she led the SSC in batting at .433 and earned First-Team All-America honors from the NFCA. This season, she led the Bucs’ to a second-place finish in the SSC and their second straight bid to the NCAA Tournament as she led the team with a .363 average, 31 runs scored and 29 stolen bases.
“I just feel very honored to be selected to represent the conference,” Collins said. “It’s to great feel appreciated, not only at my school, but among the conference. There are many people out that who are deserving, so it’s humbling to be selected by the group to represent us at the national level.”
In four years at Barry, Collins has volunteered with numerous philanthropic organizations, including the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Habitat for Humanity and the Miami Children’s Museum. Collins has spent countless hours involved with Barry-organized events as well. She has taken part in Barry’s Safe Halloween, Miami Shores Community Fest, the Adopt-A-Family Thanksgiving Food Drive and the Gobble Wobble run.
Collins initiated the America’s Moms for Solders Care Project at Barry, sending monthly care packages to American soldiers, Marines and airmen serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. She is president of the Phi Sigma Tau philosophy honor society, is a member of Phi Alpha Theta history honor society and two prestigious national honor societies – Delta Epsilon Sigma and Kappa Gamma Pi. She is also team captain of Barry’s Ethics Bowl Team.
The Vice President of the Student Athletic Advisory Committee (SAAC), she recently represented Barry and the conference at The NCAA Career in Sports Forum. The Forum is a four-day event through which selected student-athletes explore and are educated on careers in sports, with a primary focus on intercollegiate athletics. The participants are given an educational opportunity to learn and gain valuable exposure to careers in sports, specifically in the areas of coaching, administration and sports entertainment. They examine key functions of a coach or administrator within athletics, including foundational skills such as communication, networking, recruiting, managing culture, transitioning, and budgeting. Additionally, the Forum dispels myths about careers in athletics, as well as facilitates the opportunity to obtain information from current and future athletics professionals.
Collins is the third Buccanneer to be nominated by the conference since the program changed in 2006, joining Greta Trotman (tennis, 2006) and Barbi Pocza (tennis, 2011). Trotman went on to be a top-nine finalist, while Pocza finished in the top-30. The Bucs had five Florida state winners and top-10 finialists when the program was broken down by states. In all, Barry's seven finalists are the second-most of any NCAA school and the most for Division II.