Swimmer nominated for NCAA Woman of Year Award

Jacobsen swimmer

UIC swimmer Anne Jacobsen, who graduated in May with a bachelor’s in chemistry, was nominated for the NCAA Woman of the Year Award. Photo: Steve Woltmann


UIC swimmer Anne Jacobsen was honored by the Horizon League for her involvement on campus and in the community with a nomination for the NCAA Woman of the Year Award.

The Horizon League, which reviews nominees from its conference members, selected Jacobsen for her outstanding achievements at UIC. The winner will be announced at an awards dinner Oct. 18 in Indianapolis.

Jacobsen, who graduated in May with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, was president of UIC’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. She was a board member of the Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Intercollegiate Athletics, Student Tuition Advisory Committee and Student Fees Advisory Committee.

Jacobsen was a captain of the swimming and diving program for the last two seasons. She volunteered at UI Hospital and Rush University Medical Center.

Jacobsen and men’s tennis player Mitch Granger founded Students Performing Acts of Random Kindness (SPARK), which helps feed the city’s homeless population using money donated by friends, family and supporters of the cause.

With the help of several viral YouTube videos, SPARK‘s volunteer staff has more than quadrupled since November. The student group was featured on local news shows on FOX, WGN, WCIU and more.

As of June, SPARK has fed more than 600 people and clothed more than 200, with help in part from donations collected on GoFundMe.com.

“It has been an honor to represent UIC in the community as a student-athlete and giving back to the community has always been a top priority of mine,” Jacobsen said. “What SPARK does is very simple but it has had an enormous impact. We are changing the way the community views the homeless population.”

Jacobsen started a volunteer group of UIC student athletes who visit young patients at University of Illinois Children’s Hospital every month.

“I am passionate about working with kids,” she said.

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