A Summary of Philosophy and Policy Statements for The Board of Trustees, Faculty, Staff, and Alumni/ae 

If you have any questions about this summary or would like to receive a copy of the complete policy manual for the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics, please call 814-641-3512 or email the Director of Athletics at bockl@juniata.edu.

The Department of Intercollegiate Athletics provides participation opportunities for undergraduate students who possess the desire, commitment, and ability to excel in varsity sports.  As an appropriate complement to the College’s mission, the athletic department offers an educational sports experience designed to enhance each participant’s level of self-actualization and self-esteem. 

Through a thoughtful and disciplined approach to physical and mental training, team dynamics, and competitive play, athletics participation becomes a conduit for personal growth.  Student-athletes are continually challenged to set goals, maximize performance in a highly competitive environment, work collaboratively, assess and reassess results, embrace change, and maintain perspective in an environment that demands a public display of personal triumphs and failures.

In order to insure maximization of learning, the athletics department subscribes to the highest standards of teaching excellence.  Through a systematic approach to in-service training, broad-based evaluation, and participation in professional development activities, coaches are committed to attaining mastery teaching competencies and fostering an interactive, instructional environment that challenges each individual.

In contrast to the traditional major-minor sports model, the Juniata athletics department subscribes to the basic tenet of equal opportunity for all sports teams.  Policy decisions are consistently applied to each program, and team budgets reflect an equitable distribution of resources.  As a result, all teams can achieve excellence.


Athletes are students first and foremost and maximizing academic success should be their first priority. Student-athletes academic progress is monitored by the Director of Athletics in consultation with the Dean of Students.  If student-athletes receive an academic warning notice, they are contacted by the coach or athletics director and are urged to meet with their advisor and their instructor to design a strategy for improvement.  If necessary, student-athletes will be excused from practices or contests to meet with faculty or tutors. If a student-athlete’s grade point average drops below a 2.0, the Director of Athletics and the Dean of Students determine, on a case by case basis, whether to alter or terminate participation in intercollegiate athletics.

Sports schedules are designed to minimize missed class time during the competitive season.  The coaches are required to schedule away contests so that no regularly scheduled class will  missed an unacceptable number of times during a single season.  Home contests are played as late as possible as often as possible. Due to the fact that our sports do not have access to field lights, those athletes may have to miss classes for some home events. However, the expectation is that student-athletes will not miss any additional classes except for illness or emergency.  No student-athlete may miss a class for practice or a scrimmage during the traditional playing season.  No student-athlete may a class for practice, scrimmage, or a contest during an off-season training period.

Every year, coaches remind their teams that it is each individual student-athlete’s full responsibility to inform his or her professors of scheduling conflicts and to meet all deadline dates for papers and other class assignments.  Student-athletes are instructed to communicate with their professors during the first week of classes and to make pre-arrangements when quizzes, tests or special assignments conflict with contest dates.

It is important to note that if a team advances to a conference tournament or is an NCAA qualifier, the athletics department has no control over the dates and times of scheduled contests.


Student-athletes are held to higher behavioral standards than their peers.  As a visible and large student group, their behaviors are closely scrutinized by other students, faculty and staff.  In addition, they serve as ambassadors of the institution every time they compete.  Their behaviors affect peoples’ perception of institutional ethos, the character of the student-body, and the mission of the athletics program.  Therefore, it is an expectation that Juniata student-athletes will demonstrate good citizenship, sportsmanship, leadership, decision-making and self-control.

Student-athlete behavior is monitored by the Director of Athletics and the coaching staff.  Anytime an athlete violates a team rule, the coach issues a reprimand or a sanction.  If an athlete violates an athletics department or College policy, the incident is reviewed by the Director of Athletics, in consultation with the Dean of Students wherein any additional sanction may be assigned that can result in suspension or termination of participation privileges.


One of the primary tasks of the coaching staff is to recruit student-athletes who meet or exceed the academic profile of current undergraduate students at Juniata.  As a member of the NCAA (Division III), the Athletics Department must adhere to many rules during the recruiting process.  Coaches are not the only ones who must abide by these rules.  Anyone who is part of the Juniata community, including members of the Board of Trustees, faculty, staff, alumni/ae and donors, must be informed of these rules and be careful not to violate them.  A few of these rules include:

  • Do not provide any financial support or gifts to the recruit
  • Do not provide the recruit with transportation to or from Juniata College
  • Do not have an in-person conversation with a recruit at any site other than Juniata’s campus until they have completed their junior year of high school
  • Do not provide recruits with meals or any form of entertainment

For a complete copy of all recruiting rules, go to www.ncaa.org/library/membership.html and select the Division III Coaches Recruiting Guide.