JaCorey Shepherd Named Finalist for Haier Ultimate Achievement Award

LAWRENCE, Kan.  — Eight student-athletes who have been recognized this year for success beyond sports, including Kansas football’s JaCorey Shepherd, are finalists for the inaugural Haier Ultimate Achievement Award . The award, which is presented to deserving student-athletes by Haier America and the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), will be determined by an online vote through April 3rd at http://achieve.haieramerica.com.
“The Haier Achievement Award program brings to light those student-athletes who have achieved success beyond sports,” said, John Homlish, senior vice president, Digital Living Business Unit for Haier America, one of the world’s leading television and appliance manufacturers. “By asking fans to select the Haier Ultimate Achievement Award we hope to further shine a spotlight on the off-field accomplishments of these impressive young men and women.” 
Each of the nominees has already been recognized during an on-campus ceremony and earned a $2,000 donation to their school’s general scholarship fund and a Haier 48-inch LED HD television to their athletic department. The student-athlete selected as the Haier Ultimate Achievement Award winner will earn their school an additional $5,000 donation to the general scholarship fund and another Haier 48-inch LED HD television set. All fans who vote at http://achieve.haieramerica.com will be entered into a drawing to win a Haier 48-inch LED HD television. 
Shepherd, a native of Mesquite, Texas, is on schedule to graduate in May 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in management and leadership with an emphasis in entrepreneurship.  He is a three-time Academic All-Big 12 Second Team honoree and a four-time Athletic Director’s Honor Roll member. He was named the Lee Roy Selmon Community Spirit Award, a 2015 University of Kansas Men of Merit honoree and was a finalist for the Senior CLASS Award. He took home the Rock Chalk Choice Award for Best Jayhawk in a Supporting Role and was the University of Kansas nominee for the 2013-14 Big 12 Conference Male Sportsperson of the Year. Shepherd is also active in the community through Big Brothers, Big Sisters where he has established a relationship with a “little brother” Christopher and at local schools where he volunteers as a reader and at carnivals, field days and football clinics.
On the field, the 5-foot-11 190-pound cornerback earned First Team All-Big 12 in 2014. He started all 12 games for the second-straight season and led the Big 12 with 19 passes defended, while also recording 30 tackles and a team-leading three interceptions, while only allowing two touchdown passes. Additionally, he averaged 20.9 yards on 33 kick returns.
In addition to Shepherd, the following student-athletes are also finalists for the Haier Ultimate Achievement Award: Alyssa Brandt (senior, DeSales University), Averee Fields (senior, West Virginia University), Alex Grady (sophomore, Georgia Tech), Elisha Hande (senior, North Carolina State University), Angela Lowak (junior, Texas A&M University), Corey Petros (senior, Oakland University), Richie Suarez (senior, Rowan University).
“We thank Haier for understanding the challenges facing student-athletes and recognizing them for what they do beyond the playing field,” Doug Vance, Executive Director of the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
ABOUT HAIER: Haier America (www.haier.com/us/) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Haier Group, the world’s No. 1 major appliance brand as ranked by Euromonitor International 2014, and a global leader in consumer electronics. Haier employs more than 70,000 people around the world and distributes products in more than 100 countries and regions with global revenues reaching $32.1 billion in 2014.
ABOUT CoSIDA: CoSIDA (College Sports Information Directors of America, www.cosida.com) was founded in 1957 and is a 3,000-plus member national organization comprised of sports public relations, media relations and communications/information professionals throughout all levels of collegiate athletics in the U.S. and Canada. CoSIDA has two primary missions: 1) Assist communications and public relations professionals at all collegiate levels with professional development and continuing education, 2) Play a significant leadership and resource role within the overall collegiate athletics enterprise, thus helping other management groups and their respective memberships deal with the set of communications-based issues that is the most complex and challenging in history.
KUAthletics.com:  The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.