The 2015 Heart & Soul Award Winners were honored for their continued dedication to making a difference at the Lied Center for Performing Arts in April.
Photo Courtesy Scott Bruhn/Nebraska Communications
Courtesy: Nebraska Athletics
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HERO Leadership Awards

The HERO Leadership Breakfast is an annual event honoring student-athlete leaders from each varsity sport. The criteria for the HERO Award include exceptional leadership, consistent and dedicated community service, and positive influence on the team. Nominees are identified by the Life Skills staff with approval from the Academic staff and Head Coaches. HERO recipients are announced at a Leadership Breakfast every April featuring comments from Director of Athletics, Shawn Eichorst and those impacted by the good deeds of Husker student-athletes.

2015 HERO Leadership Award Recipients

Freedom Akinmoladun, Football

Will Lohman, Track & Field

Landon Bartel, Track & Field

Chris Long, Football

Jourden Casey, Soccer

Alex Lorentz, Rifle

Davon Clark, Track & Field

Ethan Lottman, Volleyball

Byerson Cockrell, Football

Mackenna Maddox, Tennis

Cassie Deeg, Golf

Cameron Palmer, Golf

Hannah Dittmar, Soccer

De’Mornay Pierson-El, Football

Joey Felici, Football

Esther Ramacieri, Baskettball

Kelsey Fien, Volleyball

Siera Rohde, Track & Field

Sarah Firestone, Track & Field

Chris Schindler, Tennis

Trey Foster, Football

Tristen Sharp, Track & Field

Levi Gipson, Track & Field

Lotte Sjulin, Softball

Blake Headley, Baseball

Kiki Stokes, Softball

Ciara Jenkins, Swimming & Diving

Alney Tobias, Cross Country

Collin Jensen, Wrestling

Coleman Tokar, Gymnastics

Jacqueline Juffer, Swimming & Diving

Jessica Wright, Cross Country

Kye Kurkowski, Basketball

Briana Zabierek, Bowling

Jennie Laeng, Gymnastics


Click here for past winners.




Heart and Soul Award

Formerly known as the Gerard Life Skills Award of Excellence, the Heart and Soul Award is presented annually at the HERO Leadership Banquet to Nebraska student-athletes who have consistently went above and beyond with community service and outreach initiatives throughout their college career. Dubbed the "Heisman of Life Skills," each recipient must be a senior student-athlete who is in their final season of athletic eligibility. Honorees are determined by members of the Life Skills staff.


2015 - Samantha Areman, Soccer; Devandrew Johnson, Track & Field; Rebekah Land, Swimming & Diving; Ian Ousley, Wrestling; Desire' Stephens, Gymnastics

2014 - Amanda Burau, Bowling; Caleb Kolb, Wrestling; Sunny Russell, Rifle; and CJ Zimmerer, Football

2013 - Ben Cotton, Football; Kelsey Larson, Swimming & Diving; and Mary Weatherholt, Women's Tennis

2012 - Ashley Guile, Softball

2011 - Jordan Burroughs, Wrestling; Erin Hannon, Track & Field; and Alex Henery, Football

2010 - Blake Lawrence, Football

2009 - Betsy Miller, Cross Country and Track & Field

2008 - Matt Senske, Football



Brook Berringer Citizenship Team

Created after the passing of quarterback Brook Berringer, the Citizenship Team recognizes Husker football players who have demonstrated a passion for service and involvement. Selected by the Life Skills staff, recipients receive an award and are honored at the annual Spring Football game.

2015 Brook Berringer Citizenship Team


Freedom Akinmoladun

Harrison Jordan

Christian Bailey

Joshua Kalu

Alex Boryca

Bo Kitrell

Tyson Brokemeier

David Knevell

Drew Brown

Chongo Kondolo

Sam Burtch

Spencer Lindsay

Byerson Cockrell

Chris Long

Maliek Collins

Kevin Maurice

Imani Cross

Greg McMuller

Daniel Davie

Mike Moudy

Joey Felici

Graham Nabity

Jerald Foster

Marcus Newby

Trey Foster

De’Mornay Pierson-El

Luke Gifford

Trevor Roach

Zach Hannon

Johnny Stanton

Blake Holtmeier

Chris Weber

 Lane Hovey

Jordan Westerkamp

Dwayne Johnson

Kieron Williams 


Click here for past winners.


Tom Osborne Citizenship Team

Newly created and implemented for the first time in the 2013-2014 academic calendar year, the annual Tom Osborne Citizenship Team pays tribute to legendary Nebraska Head Football Coach and Athletic Director, Tom Osborne. Under Osborne, the Nebraska was among the first institutions nationwide to implement a comprehensive Life Skills program. To be named to the Tom Osborne Citizenship Team, student-athletes must complete a minimum of six new service projects, and/or mentor in the academic calendar year, while being in both good academic and athletic standing. In it's second year, Nebraska proudly named 296 student-atheltes to the Tom Osborne Citizenship Team.

Click here to view this year's recipients.


Unsung Hero Award

Started in 2013-2014, the Unsung Hero Award was presented annually to at least one student-athlete who, through humility and selfless dedication, has consistently been a part of the Life Skills program demonstrating a passion for service and volunteerism. The Unsung Hero also displays a strong passion for Nebraska Athletics, supporting student-athlete peers from all sports and is recognized department-wide as a positive, energetic and engaging individual committed to making a difference in the lives of others.


2014 - Nate Wong, Golf


Postgraduate Scholarships

Life Skills facilitates all student-athlete postgraduate nominations. Opportunities are available at both the conference and national level; student-athletes who are in their final season of athletic eligibility and meet a minimum grade point average along with excellence in the community are eligible to apply. Award amounts range between $5,000 and $10,000 per scholarship. To apply, students must secure letters of recommendation, complete a personal statement and summarize all athletic achievements, academic honors and community service.

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