ERIE, Pa. -- Mercyhurst College women's water polo player Molly Kelesian (Sr., Richmond Heights, Va./Regina) was among three recipients of the college's 2011 Sister Damien Spirit Award.
In its fourth year, the annual award is given to a student (primary award) and community member (honorary award) who embodies the spirit of Sister Damien. For nearly 20 years, Sister Damien always was there to cheer on Mercyhurst student-athletes. A fixture at Laker games with her cowbell in one hand and holy water in the other, she became a Mercyhurst legend. Her love of the college and pride in the accomplishments of its students became the spirit of Mercyhurst.
In addition to her role as a student-athletes, Keleshian went above and beyond the regular duties of a work-study assistant. In four years with the Athletics Communication office she logged more than 20 hours per week to promote and publicize the entire department, often working 12-hour days alongside the full-time staff.
She stayed to work when school was not in session and returned early from breaks, in addition to working multiple weekends and holidays. All told, she combined with fellow primary award recipient David Haurin (baseball) to spend approximately 6,000 combined hours supporting the athletics department – and that's not including the time commitment to their respective teams and academic coursework.
Like Sister Damien, Keleshian actively contributed to the life of the College through her involvement in various religious, social, academic and athletic activities, as well as their participation in community service. A certified peer educator, Keleshian traveled to local Erie schools to mentor youth on peer pressure and alcohol use. Additionally, she was an integral part of her team's success by serving as the social/community service coordinator for women's water polo.
Release courtesy Mercyhurst Athletic Communications