Contreras is first PNW rep at NCAA

Ismael Contreras will be taking on a leadership role in his joining of PNW's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. Members serve as ambassadors for student athletes and make decisions on things such as regulations and practice time.

Ismael Contreras will be taking on a leadership role in his joining of PNW's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. Members serve as ambassadors for student athletes and make decisions on things such as regulations and practice time.

PNW’s own Ismael Contreras, a sophomore, is a defender on the men’s soccer team and a business analytics major. But he recently scored a new position off the field and it might just be his most important yet.

He is the first PNW student athlete to represent the school at NCAA Division II student athlete governance meetings. Contreras is PNW’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) delegate to the NCAA SAAC. The Division II SAAC serves as the primary governance arm representing student athlete interests within the division. SAAC members serve as student athlete liaisons who monitor and discuss happenings on campuses, within conference and at the national level.

Contreras is one of 28 students from schools across the nation who serve on the committee. GLIAC, the conference PNW just joined, is also represented by Olivia Faught of Southern Arkansas University.

“I think this is huge for us,” said Contreras. “This is our first official year [in Division II].”

This is not Contreras’ first leadership role.

“Being an athlete, you kind of get pushed into [leadership roles],” he said. “You can take it and run with it or you can shy away from it, and I guess you can say I took it and ran with it.”

Through this new role, Contreras will be part of a board with other student athletes who will vote on rules and regulations affecting NCAA athletes and his voice may directly affect PNW athletics. Recently, Contreras supported longer workout times and practices, measures that were approved. He said this will help teams accelerate in their game and ultimately get where they need to be athletically.