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Calvin Receives Grant to Hire Tucker
August 22, 2007

Laura TuckerCalvin College is one of just 16 colleges and universities across the country to receive an NCAA Division III Ethnic Minority and Women's Internship Grant (some 70 schools applied).

These grants of $23,100 are designed essentially to help D3 schools such as Calvin hire an intern for their athletic departments that they normally would not be able to hire. Funding covers the intern's salary ($20,100) with the extra $3,000 slated to help the intern attend professional development activities such as the annual NCAA Convention.

Calvin in turn provides administrative supervision and mentorship as a requirement of participation and also provides an additional in-kind contribution of at least $3,000 per year for the intern's personal living expenses, academic expenses or a coaching stipend.

At Calvin the intern's position has been crafted to assist women's athletic director Dr. Nancy Meyer and men's athletic director Dr. Jim Timmer: everything from event management to budget to involvement in the planning to move into the new Spoelhof Fieldhouse Complex in the fall of 2008.

Although it's a big job on the face of it Calvin feels it has found the right
person for the position in the hiring of Laura Tucker.

A Holland Christian High School and Calvin College graduate, Tucker has now been on campus for just over two weeks in her new position. She also doubles as the top varsity assistant with the Calvin women's volleyball team -- a position she has held since the 2003 season.

"I am absolutely thrilled to be serving in this position at my alma mater,"
said Tucker. "I have a deep love for Calvin College and a strong interest in
coaching and athletics administration."

Tucker's love for Calvin developed in a bit of an unusual way as she arrived
as a student in the fall of 1999 but then left in 2001 to play one season at
Division II Lake Superior State University. "I wanted to get away from home and try something new," said Tucker. "But it did not take long before I started to realize how much I missed Calvin and everything it had to offer."

Tucker then elected to transfer back to Calvin in time for the 2002 fall
semester and rejoin the Calvin volleyball team for her senior year. Tucker's
senior year was an instant success as she landed a spot on the All-MIAA first
team as a setter, averaging 13.84 assists-per-game which stood as Calvin's
single season record until this past fall when Katie Zondervan established a
new mark of 14.13.

After graduating from Calvin in the spring of 2003 with a degree in exercise
science. Tucker joined the Calvin volleyball coaching staff that fall and has
since helped the Knights achieve three NCAA III Tournament bids in the last
four years including back-to-back appearances in the national
semi-quarterfinals.

"Laura has been a big part of the success of our program as both a player and as a coach," said Calvin head volleyball coach Amber Warners who is headed into her sixth year at the helm of the Knights. "When this internship opportunity came up, I encouraged her to apply."

Tucker is glad that she did. "Amber has been a great role model for me. Both
as a person and as a coach," said Tucker. "Her encouragement and instruction has played a big role in my career development."

Tucker was also quick to to note her excitement of working with Calvin's
entire athletics department. "I am looking forward to working with everyone in
the department and learning as much as possible from every coach and every sport," said Tucker. "I'm thankful that I will have great instructors in Nancy Meyer and Jim Timmer to help me along the way."

Prior to starting her position as an athletic department intern, Tucker worked
as a personal trainer in Holland. She is currently working on her master's
degree at Michigan State University.

"Laura is a great fit for this position and we feel blessed to have her on
board," said Meyer. "We also are very grateful to the NCAA for providing the
resources for this grant."

Timmer echoed those thoughts. "It's great to have Laura on board," said
Timmer. "Her enthusiasm and love for the college are huge assets for our
department and we're looking forward to working with her for the next two years in this role."

~written by sports information director Jeff Febus (with additional reporting by Phil de Haan)

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