Following his graduation from Butler May 13, Grant Leiendecker will begin a yearlong paid postgraduate internship with the Eligibility Center of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in Indianapolis. He and Butler classmate Emily Newell were among the 19 individuals offered a 2011-2012 internship, which start in June.

The NCAA Postgraduate Internship provides on-the-job learning experiences for college graduates who express an interest in pursuing a career in intercollegiate athletics administration based at the NCAA national office in Indianapolis.

“Having the opportunity to work for the NCAA is very special to me because I have been a student-athlete at Butler for five years,” said Grant Leiendecker, who was a guard for the Bulldogs men’s basketball team, the national runner-up in the 2010 and 2011 NCAA tournaments. A native of Fort Wayne, Ind., Leiendecker also contributed to the Bulldogs’ consecutive Horizon League regular season titles and four league tournament championships.

“I have learned so many invaluable lessons and grown so much as an individual,” he said. “I will be proud to work for an organization that allows me to help make the student athlete experience as great as it was for me. It will allow me to give back to the athletes and help make their college experience special.”

Despite the extensive travel required of the team, Leiendecker carried a full course load in his finance major and chemistry minor and earned a cumulative GPA of 3.1 out of 4.0.

Over the past two summers, he completed internships with two Indianapolis businesses. He was a marketing assistant with Firehouse Graphics Inc., where he assisted executives in installing a new accounting and job-costing software and creating a customer appreciation program. As a financial analyst intern with Celadon Trucking, Inc., Leiendecker oversaw creation of a master database to organize and update rate agreements with Celadon’s client base.

While attending Butler, Leiendecker also served as basketball camp counselor and volunteered with Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital, Riley Area Development Corp., North United Methodist Church and St. Gabriel Archangel School, where he helped rebuild an environmental center.

In a letter recommending Leiendecker for the NCAA internship, Butler head basketball coach Brad Stevens wrote that “Grant led the way,” in demonstrating the “team-first attitude” that fueled the Bulldogs’ success in recent NCAA tournament play. Stevens described how Leiendecker “valued being a great teammate,” mentoring and supporting younger players, even when their success on the court reduced his own opportunities to play.

“It’s easy to be the person that plays all the time and gets all the accolades,” Stevens wrote. “But, to me, you can tell a lot more about a person, and their character, when they find themselves in a situation similar to Grant’s. He’s passionate about preparing, selfless in his approach, thankful for every opportunity, accountable for his results, and committed to serving others.”

Media contact: Mary Ellen Stephenson(317) 940-6944mestephe@butler.edu

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