NEW LONDON, Conn.--Sarah Jane Otey, who graduated from the Coast Guard Academy in May, has been selected as one of the Top 30 honorees for the NCAA Woman of the Year award. Otey, who was the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) representative for the award, landed among the top 30 from a group of nearly 430 total nominees. The three-time NEMWAC All-Conference rower was one of the top 10 finalists in Division III. In September, nine finalists, three from each division, will be named, with the NCAA Woman of the Year winner announced during an awards ceremony in Indianapolis on October 14.
Otey is an accomplished rower and swimmer, helping to lead the Coast Guard crew team to a spot in the NCAA championship in 2008 and 2012 and qualifying for the NCAA swimming & diving championship five times in her career. She is also an outstanding student, carrying a 3.97 GPA in marine and environmental science, earning six NEWMAC Academic All-Conference distinctions and receiving the George C. Alexander award at the Coast Guard Academy for "highest proficiency in physical chemistry, analytical chemistry and toxicology."
Otey took on a number of leadership and service roles during her time at the Academy. In 2009-10, she stepped away from her classmates and teammates at Coast Guard and spent a year doing humanitarian work in Peru. During her time in Peru, Otey worked at a local clinic, tutored children in English and helped build clean-burning stoves for rural families.
Otey has also been a mentor in the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program and was the community service department head at Coast Guard in 2011. She is a two-time Capital One Academic All-District honoree and a member of Alpha Lambda Delta, the freshman honors society. She received the Elite 89 award at this year's NCAA rowing championship and is a two-time Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA) All-American.
The NCAA Woman of the Year Award honors graduating student-athletes who have distinguished themselves throughout their collegiate careers in the areas of academic achievement, athletics excellence, community service and leadership.