By Samantha McKosky ’19 / Sports Information Staff
WILLIMANTIC, Conn. – Mckenzie Maneggia, a setter on this year’s Little East Conference women’s volleyball championship team and a member of the Student -Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), has acquired the National Associate SAAC representative position in the Little East Conference this fall.
DIII SAAC is the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee made up of student-athletes to discuss and give input on issues of the student-athletes lives. SAAC’s mission is to support and improve student-athlete’s teams, community, academics and help organize community service events.
Maneggia, a junior from Andover, assists and discusses the issues and compiles the decisions to promote a more positive student-athlete from every Little East Conference school. She relays the information to the MASCAC (Massachusetts State College Athletic Conference) to then get approved at the National SAAC level.
In December, Maneggia will be representing the Little East in Worcester, MA with the MASCAC to discuss further the conferences votes. In January, Maneggia will attend the DIII NCAA conference in Orlando.
A Sport & Leisure Management major, Maneggia is interested in a career in athletic compliance, which focuses work at a college’s athletic program and monitors a student-athlete’s eligibility within the NCAA rule book. “SAAC is a great place to start new things, institute new rules and look at legislation. It was just a perfect fit for me,” says Maneggia, 20.
On September 30, SAAC put together a volleyball event in the Geissler Gymnasium for student-athletes. The game was a good turnout for SAAC and the athletes had a fun experience.
Maneggia has been encouraged working with Michael Davis, the department’s Coordinator of Student-Athlete Success who heads up SAAC as part of his duties. His leadership roles have motivated Maneggia to make a difference for all student-athletes. “It’s very helpful having him work with us,” Maneggia said of Davis. “He’s helped build up SAAC.”
Each intercollegiate program at Eastern is represented by up to three team members in SAAC, which meets twice a month to review existing athletic department policies, forward suggestions for change, and plan community service projects. At present, the committee is coordinating a winter clothes drive.
In her second full season in the volleyball program this past fall, Maneggia appeared in 100 of a possible 105 sets with a team-high 539 assists in helping the Warriors to the Little East Conference regular-season and tournament titles and a final record of 23-7. She enters her senior season needing just over 100 assists for 1,000 in her career.
Maneggia hopes her experience in SAAC will help expand her knowledge in rules, legislation, and networking. She believes her dedication and actions in SAAC will make a difference in the NCAA and aims for positive outcomes for Eastern’s student-athletes.