Erik Meendsen, a senior on the Austin College men's tennis team, was selected earlier in April as a Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Character and Community Award recipient.
Meendsen’s community involvement began early in his time at Austin College. Now a senior, Meendsen participated in a medical mission to Nicaragua near the start of his tenure in Sherman. During that trip, Meendsen was part of a group that brought both medical and dental supplies to people in need, while also helping construct necessities such as wheelchair ramps.
Of course, Meendsen’s involvement in volunteer and charity work started even before he ever arrived on the Austin College campus. The All-Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference performer went on a mission trip to New Orleans with Aledo Methodist Church, in an effort to help the survivors of Hurricane Katrina by aiding in restoration of houses damaged during the disaster.
As part of the Austin College tennis program, Meendsen has also had opportunities to give back to the local community throughout his four years in Sherman. In addition to participating in Austin College’s Great Day of Service, he also worked with local youth as the ‘Roo tennis program reached out to the community with RooBound last fall. During this event, Meendsen worked with kids from around Sherman and the surrounding area, teaching them the game of tennis. For Meendsen, it was a rewarding experience he hopes will create a passion in the local youth for the sport he loves.
A four-year letter-winner at Austin College, Meendsen has been a member of the SCAC Academic Honor Roll in addition to being selected to the SCAC All-Sportsmanship Team.