Is your son or daughter considering playing a sport in college? Attend this informational meeting to learn more about what it takes to succeed on and off the playing field. Parents and their children are invited to attend this session together.
Continue reading below to learn more about the evening's presenters.
Shawna Armstrong is the Senior Athletic Recruiting Liaison for Aurora University Athletics. Armstrong serves primarily as the admissions and financial aid contact for prospective students and their families during their recruitment process. She was largely involved in the execution and development of the athletic recruiting liaison position at Aurora, building a foundation for the addition of a second liaison in the department. Armstrong is a former collegiate golfer at North Central College, graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in sports management and marketing in 2009 and a Masters’ degree from NCC in Sports Leadership & Administration in 2012. She was a 2x CCIW All-Academic Team member.
Jim Hamad became the Director of Athletics at Aurora University in winter 2013. He came to AU from Pepperdine University where he spent part of five years as the Associate Director of Athletics for Student Development. In his time at the helm of the AU Athletic Department, Hamad's Spartans have captured the Northern Athletics Conference All-Sport Awards six times. Under his leadership, the Spartan athletic program finished in the top 50 of the 2014-2015 Learfield Cup and top 80 in 2015–2016, the best finishes ever by AU. In his years as an athletic administrator, Hamad has served on a variety of boards and committees and been honored with numerous awards. In 1996, he was named a NCAA Division III Track and Field All-American. A 2000 graduate of Kent State, Hamad earned a Bachelor’s degree in conflict management. He went on to acquire a Master’s degree in higher education administration from Akron in 2005.
Rick Ponx was named the Head Football Coach of the Aurora University football program in December of 2013. In the third year of his tenure, Ponx led the Spartans to a Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference Championship. Ponx has held coaching and coordinator positions at prominent Division III programs over the past two decades, including roles at Ohio Northern University and North Central College. He also served as a consultant in 2013 for the IHSA Class 8A State Champion Naperville Central High School. Ponx is a member of the AFCA and Football Coaches Professional Growth Association. He speaks regularly at camps and clinics throughout the country, most recently including the Frank Glazier Clinic in 2011 (Chicago) and 2013 (Indianapolis) and the IHSA Football Coaches Clinic in 2015 in Champaign. Ponx received his Bachelor’s degree from Elmhurst College and his Master’s degree from Bowling Green State University.