By ES HETHCOX
The ball whooshes through the net as Kendall Parker’s sneakers skim across court. The crowd’s cheers rebound from wall to wall, excitement courses through the air.
During her four years as a player on the UMW women’s basketball team, the senior guard has broken the school record for free-throw percentage and earned a career high of 36 points during a game against Christopher Newport University.
But Parker’s accomplishments stretch far beyond the basketball court.
The political science major, who holds a 3.99 grade point average, recently claimed a national award. She was one of two runners-up in the 2017 annual undergraduate paper competition hosted by the national political science honor society Pi Sigma Alpha.
Her research paper, titled “A Comparison of Female Conscription: Israel versus the United States,” focused on the ways in which Israel and the United States deviate from each other in regard to their inclusion of women in the military draft. She also analyzed how their different policies reconciled the needs of women.
Parker’s recognition marks the 10th time a UMW political science or international relations major has won the prestigious award. “Kendall makes excellence look effortless,” said Associate Professor of Political Science Rosalyn Cooperman, who has advised Parker since her freshman year. “It’s not uncommon for students to excel, but what is remarkable about Kendall is her determination. She is a starter on the women’s basketball team, and that dedication shows in her studies.”
Award-winning academics and impressive feats on the court aren’t Parker’s only accomplishments. She is a member of Pi Sigma Alpha, Mortar Board, Phi Beta Kappa and Chi Alpha Sigma, and she is service coordinator for the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.