Brand Selected as Candidate for NCAA Senior CLASS Award

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Redshirt senior setter Katie Brand is one of 30 NCAA women’s volleyball student-athletes who excel both on and off the court that were selected as candidates for the 2016 Senior CLASS Award, as announced Thursday. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.

As a life science (pre physician assistant) and gerontology major with minors in biology and leadership, Brand maintains a 3.64 cumulative GPA. Three times she has been selected to the Academic All-Big 12 First Team along with being named to the Academic All-District 7 First Team in 2015. She has earned a spot on the Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll five times in her career and earned a perfect 4.0 GPA in Fall 2015. Brand was recently accepted into a physician assistant graduate program at UMKC.

Brand is a leader on the court, being voted team captain by her teammates and selected to the team’s leadership council. She was appointed by her teammates to act as correspondent between the coaching staff and the players, meeting monthly to discuss the progress of the team and ideas regarding how to promote leadership and ways to implement core values into daily activities.

The Grand Island, Nebraska, native has worked with multiple organizations and community events since coming to K-State in 2012. She has been an executive member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) since 2013 and has worked with elementary students through K-State’s Cats in the Classroom program. Brand has volunteered at a local retirement home, assisted with the Adopt-a-Family Wrap Party, participated in the Tipoff for TP program, helped organize Special Olympics events with K-State student-athletes and other local organizations.

After redshirting her freshman year, the 6-1 setter has been selected AVCA All-America Honorable Mention each of the last two seasons (2014-15). Along with her All-America status, she also was named to both the AVCA Midwest All-Region Team and All-Big 12 First Team (2014-15) twice after being named to the All-Big 12 Freshmen Team in 2013. Brand is the Big 12’s active career leader in assists and is currently third on Kansas State’s career charts in the rally-scoring era (since 2001). A two-time Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week, her achievements on the court also have earned her a spot on the USA Collegiate National Volleyball Team (2014-present), including a trip to China in Summer 2016.

An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities

The 30 candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists later in the regular season, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one candidate who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition. The Senior CLASS Award winner will be announced during the 2016 NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball Championship in December.

For more information on all the candidates, visit seniorCLASSaward.com.

Volleyball Candidates

Inky Ajanaku, Stanford

Dani Mostrom, Wichita State

Jazzmin Babers, Texas A&M

Demi Muses, New Hampshire

Abby Bessler, Xavier

Meghan Niemann, Marquette

Jess Bird, Creighton

Kayla Ostrom, Lipscomb

Amy Boswell, BYU

Megan O’Sullivan, Fairfield

Katie Brand, Kansas State

Chloe Reinig, Michigan State

Hayley Farrer, Idaho State

Kadie Rolfzen, Nebraska

Claire Felix, UCLA

Keelin Severtson, New Hampshire

Tessa Fournier, Seton Hall

Ashley Smith, TCU

Janey Goodman, James Madison

Lauren Smith, Creighton

Carly Kan, Missouri

Hannah Tapp, Minnesota

Grace Kauth, Cleveland State

Paife Tapp, Minnesota

Hannah Klemm, Hofstra

Teegan Van Gunst, Georgia Tech

Valeria Leon, Ohio State

Cassie Wait, Kansas

Laini Leindecker, Albany

Taylor Whittingham, Southern California