Critical to the retention and graduation efforts of UNL student-athletes are various academic supervision programs. Athletic/academic counselors supervise study halls, gather academic progress information, and monitor UNL, Big Ten and NCAA academic rules and policies. There are two facets to the study hall program. Student-athletes either attend a structured study hall, typically two hours in length held four days a week, or have flex time where they study a specific number of hours each week during Hewit Center hours. Evening study hall is usually comprised of student-athletes who are freshmen and transfers. The flex time study program is designed for upper-class women and men. Some student-athletes require minimal supervision while others are required to meet regularly with a mentor/tutor. Academic counselors and coaches determine which study hall program meets the academic needs of a student based upon test scores, class rank, grade point average, probation status, present class schedule and past academic record. Weekly study hall reports are distributed by athletic/academic counselors to coaching staffs.
Grade cards are also used to monitor the academic progress of student-athletes. During the sixth and 11th weeks of each semester, academic grade cards are sent to the professors of all student-athletes for each of their courses. Student-athletes sign a release form allowing professors to complete and return the grade reports to the Hewit Center staff, who subsequently reviews the information with the student-athlete and head coach. Professors typically comment on attendance, class participation and estimated grade. Each student-athlete is also required to have their University adviser complete a satisfactory progress form and pre-registration worksheet. The satisfactory progress form is used to determine the applicability of a student's current courses toward graduation. This is an official document maintained on file in the athletic certification coordinator's office within the department of registration and records. The pre-registration worksheet is completed by the faculty adviser and student-athlete to assist the student in completing the registration process for the upcoming semester. Information received from professors and advisers assists athletic/academic counselors in monitoring UNL policies, Big Ten and NCAA eligibility rules, and graduation progress. Athletic/academic counselors consult regularly with the athletic certification coordinator to review the eligibility of certified student-athletes. Athletic/academic counselors work in conjunction with faculty advisers and registration/records officials to ensure satisfactory progress leading to graduation. Student-athletes who have completed their eligibility but not their degree potentially can receive tuition, fees & books through the degree completion program sponsored by the Center for the Study of Sport in Society. In return, student-athletes contract to complete either community service hours or voluntary campus employment.