Cody Lensing named regional winner for DII CCA Scholar Athlete Awards

LOCK HAVEN, Pa. – Sixteen regional winners of the NCAA Division II Conference Commissioners Association Scholar-Athlete of the Year Award have been announced today. A male and female Division II Scholar-Athlete of the Year will be selected from the 16 regional winners, eight men and eight women. Augustana’s Cody Lensing was selected as regional winners from the NSIC.

This award, sponsored by the Division II Conference Commissioners Association, provides the opportunity for Division II to highlight the extraordinary achievements of its student-athletes. D.II CCA President and Commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference, Steve Murray, noted that the award showcases the academic and athletic talent at the NCAA Division II level. “Division II prides itself on the overall balance it allows student-athletes to practice in their daily lives, between athletics, academics, campus affairs and social events. These nominees are the perfect example of student-athletes who have figured out this balance and have excelled both academically and athletically,” said Murray.

The commissioners from the regions that comprise the Division II basketball alignment selected the regional winners. To be nominated for consideration, a student-athlete must have attained a 3.0 career cumulative grade point average and possess outstanding athletic credentials.

The national award winners will be announced Monday, October 22nd.

Cody Lensing, a native of Mounds View, Minn., is a senior majoring in biochemistry and minoring in philosophy at Augustana College. The Totino-Grace High School graduate holds a 3.96 GPA as he wrestled at 125 pounds for the Vikings. He also earn the NSIC’s Britton Award, giving to the top male student-athlete in the league.

Lensing was a 2012 NCAA Elite 89 winner at the Division II Wrestling Championships, joining Braithwaite as the only Viking athletes to earn the award. The Elite 89 is presented to the student-athlete with the highest cumulative grade-point average participating at the finals site for each of the NCAA’s 89 championships. He was also a two-time Academic All-American, a four-time NSIC All-Academic team member and a seven-time Dean’s List honoree. He was also presented with the prestigious Myles Brand All-Academic with Distinction Award from the NSIC as well.

On campus Lensing was a member of the Phi Sigma Tau (Philosophy Honor Society); Beta Beta Beta (National Biological Honor Society); the Augustana Outdoor Club; the Philosophy Club; Student Members of the American Chemical Society (SMACS) and was a chemistry and biology lab assistant and tutor.

On the mat, Lensing was a 2012 NCAA All-American and a NSIC All-Conference Second Team member. Lensing entered the 2012 NCAA Wrestling Championship 20-5 and unranked. He won his way to the 125 pound championship match as he defeated three nationally ranked wrestlers, including a pin of third-ranked Kenny Trumbetta (Seton Hill, Pa.) in the quarterfinals. Lensing lost to Kyle McCrite (Grand Canyon, Ariz.) 3-9 in the finals as he earned All-American honors for the first time. He finished his career with a 69-25 record at Augustana.

In the course of his research experiences at Augustana College and Sanford Research, Lensing developed the desire to lead a research team working to help humanity by advancing and creating treatments for human diseases. He has yet to determine if he wants to pursue this aspiration into industry solely as a researcher or in academia as a professor and researcher. Lensing will be attending the University of Minnesota this fall working toward his Ph.D. in medicinal chemistry. He also intends to use his philosophy training to be a voice in philosophical and ethical discussions which surround the pharmaceutical industry.

In his spare time, Lensing has helped the Women’s Historical Club with repairing their facilities; volunteered at Sanford Children’s Hospital as a pediatrics companion; tutored at inner city elementary schools in Minneapolis; helped younger wrestlers at various levels including working at high school and elementary camps and Sanford’s Legends camp; and has helped to set up and participated in charity fundraiser races for causes such as Walk to End Alzheimer’s, the Women’s Shelters, and American Lung Association.

In additional to his athletic, academic, and volunteer activities, Lensing also participated in the Grandma’s Marathon; the Liberty Half Ironman Triathlon in Independence, Minn.; Ice Dive to support the American Lung Association; and has worked as a researcher on potential anti-cancer drugs.

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