Washburn Lady Blues tennis player Trang Le Nguyen was the South Central Regional winner of the ITA/Arthur Ashe Leadership and Sportsmanship Award given out prior to the beginning of NCAA national tennis tournament.
Le Nguyen, who picked up her second MIAA Most Valuable Player award this fall leading the Lady Blues to the MIAA Tournament Championship and a NCAA South Central Regional Tournament berth, was one of eight regional winners.
At Washburn on top of her tennis accolades, is also active in many student organizations including service as the president of the Washburn International Club, a senator in the Washburn Student Governement, a committee member in the Chinese Club as well as a member in the Leadership Institute, Mortar Board, Phi Kappa Phi, the Washburn Alumni Network and the Washburn Honor Program.
“She’s defines leadership and what a student athlete on a University should be,” tennis head coach Dave Alden said. “She represents Washburn so well both on and off the court and in the classroom and in the campus community overall. She’s going to be an assistant coach next year so I’m thrilled to have her back for another year.”
From Le Nguyen’s letter to the selection committee: “When I first came to America, people were so friendly and helpful. They always made me feel welcome and comfortable. Therefore, I understand how important it is to feel welcomed in a new place. That is why I always try to help other new students, especially international students, to do what they need to do to fit into this new environment. I have received so much help from people, and in return I want to help others. I used to think that if I helped people around me, tried to get more involved and do community services it would make my résumé look good. However, I have learned that feelings, connections, and love that you get from people are more important than anything else. You can change your resume, but you cannot change people’s feelings about who you are. You can fix your document, but you cannot erase what people think of you. Helping and caring for other people is one of the best ways to build a better life. A good leader is one who knows how to lead people with their knowledge and their skills, while recognizing that they must also listen and learn, thereby helping others.”
The ITA/Arthur Ashe Leadership and Sportsmanship Award recognizes outstanding individuals in all divisions at the regional and national level. In August the national winners are honored during a special ceremony hosted by the USTA during Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day inside Ashe Stadium. This award which dates back to 1982, goes to NCAA Divisions I, II and III, NAIA and JuCo men’s and women’s players who have exhibited outstanding sportsmanship and leadership as well as scholastic, extracurricular and tennis achievements.