With the start of the 1990-91 academic school year, Rider University implemented its innovative Arete' Program for all student-athletes. Arete refers to the ancient Greek ideal of a balanced striving for excellence in all areas of life. The purpose of the program, which has been detailed in The New York Times and The Times of Trenton, is to help student-athletes develop in all areas of their lives, not just on the playing fields or in the classroom. Subjects of the seminars include time management, stress management, sports nutrition, substance abuse, communication skills, study skills, training techniques, HIV, etiquette/good manners, interview techniques, resume writing, and life after Rider.
Student Transitional Education Program (STEP)
During the 1993-94 academic year, the Rider Department of Athletics developed STEP for varsity athletics. Under the direction of Associate Director of Athletics Greg Busch, STEP provides individual and group tutoring, as well as study tables that are mandatory for certain student-athletes. STEP also coordinates progress reports and monitors the student-athletes’ academic progress, and provides workshops on topics such as library skills, test taking, and note taking. Last year Rider added its first full-time Academic Support Coordinator, Sonya Hurt.
Through the mentor program, established in the fall of 1994, Rider faculty members or administration are paired with varsity athletic teams. Mentors are present for support, advice, cheerleading, as well as other non-coaching duties. The mentor program opens communication lines between faculty/staff members and athletes, and gives the student-athlete another person in the Rider community to turn to for support and guidance.
Student Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC)
Comprised of one student-athlete from each of Rider’s varsity teams, the Student-Athlete Advisory Council meets monthly to discuss various student-welfare issues and to organize ways for student-athletes to become involved in the community. Through the advisory council, Rider student-athletes have organized toy drives and served meals to the needy at Thanksgiving.