Mount Olive’s Ceppi Honored with Conference Carolinas Murphy Osborne Award

HIGH POINT, N.C. – Conference Carolinas is proud to recognize Francesca Ceppi as the 2014-2015 recipient of the Murphy Osborne Award. A tennis player at the University of Mount Olive, Ceppi was selected from a field of elite nominees based on her academic, athletic, and service accomplishments for Conference Carolinas’ outstanding senior award.

Ceppi is pursuing a degree in Psychology and has earned an overall GPA of 3.84, with a 3.77 in her major field of study. Her numerous academic awards and achievements that include: 2013-14 University of Mount Olive Female Scholar Athlete of the Year, seven-time Conference Carolinas Presidential Honor Roll member, three-time UMO Dean’s List member, three-time UMO women’s tennis Highest Team GPA recipient, two-time UMO President’s List member, Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar, and Conference Carolinas Academic All-Conference Team member.  

On the tennis court Ceppi has played the No. 1 seed while also serving as team captain. She has been a starter for four years, and has been named to the Conference Carolinas All-Conference Second Team in each of her three previous years of play.  She was awarded the 2012 UMO Coaches Award, 2013 Most Wins Award, and was a two-time league Player of the Week. In 2014, Ceppi was named to the Conference Carolinas All-Tournament Team.

According to Mount Olive Head Coach, Kevin Coghill, “Francesca is simply the most responsible young lady that I have ever coached and the strongest leader that I have ever coached. She has the unique ability to inspire those around her with her positive attitude and work ethic. She has garnered the respect and admiration of all her teammates because of the outstanding example she sets and selfless manner in which she handles herself. With a maturity well beyond her years, Francesca is the type of leader a coach can trust to always do the right things for the betterment of the team. Despite her enormous gifts, Francesca is self-effacing, full of life and a joy to be around. She is a winner among winners!”

Ceppi is involved in many service and community opportunities to help give back. She is the president of the Mount Olive Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) and represents Conference Carolinas as a member of the National SAAC. Ceppi is also on the National SAAC Executive Committee where she is involved with the NCAA helping to represent students-athletes on the national level. Under her guidance, Mount Olive’s campus SAAC raised $3,200 for Make-a-Wish in 2014, the most in Conference Carolinas. In addition, Ceppi has served as a member and organization secretary for the UMO International Club, a UMO Supplemental Instruction Peer Tutor, and the UMO Psi Chi International Honor Society President and Vice President.

“Francesca has received numerous awards,” stated UMO Director of Athletics Jeff Eisen, “but to me, the most impressive is the Covenant Award, a monthly award presented to UMO student-athletes who best represent the eight virtues of the University Covenant. In the three-year history of this award, Francesca is the only two-time winner, having been honored for the virtues of Caring and Honesty. Francesca Ceppi symbolizes all of the things that the Murphy Osborne Award represents.”

Conference Carolinas institutions are able to nominate one student athlete, that qualifies and best represents their school and the conference. The finalists for the highest academic award presented by the conference are as follows: Brianna Thomas of Barton College, Nicolas Obermayer of Belmont Abbey College, Hanlon Maivelett of Erskine College, Summer Kremer of King University, Nicole Eno of Limestone College, Francesca Ceppi of the University of Mount Olive, and Lukas Janes of Pfeiffer University.

To be eligible for the award, a student must be a senior student-athlete with a minimum grade point average of 3.25. The student must be a full-time student at the time of nomination, must have been a full-time student for at least two years at the member school, and must be a starter or important substitute in a conference sport. The recipient is selected by the Faculty Athletics Representatives of Conference Carolinas institutions and represents the best of the best for the league.