VIDEO: Florida Tech Being Considered For NCAA Division II Award of Excellence

By  //  December 5, 2015

ABOVE VIDEO: Video produced by Barry Eager ’89 from Phantom Productions of Florida. (FTPanthers Video)

BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – A video highlighting Florida Tech’s partnership with The Scott Center for Autism Treatment’s social skills group and Team IMPACT has been submitted for consideration for the 2016 NCAA Division II Award of Excellence.

The theme of the video is “Special Kids Become Special Panthers.”

Children from The Scott Center’s social skills group and Team IMPACT were recognized during a medal presentation at halftime of the football team’s Homecoming Game against then No. 1 ranked West Georgia on Nov. 7. Presenting “Honorary Panther” medals to each child were President and CEO Dr. Anthony Catanese, Board of Trustee and football legend Doug Flutie and Athletics Director Bill Jurgens.

The video also includes interviews and footage documenting the Panthers’ involvement with the two organizations. Among those interviewed were Dana Gadaire, who oversees the social skills program at The Scott Center, and two student-athletes whose teams have a child from Team IMPACT: senior men’s lacrosse player Alex Carlson and sophomore softball player Amanda Kahn.

The NCAA Division II Award of Excellence recognizes the best activity and/or event between January and November 2015 that exemplifies excellence in any of the areas covered by the six Division II attributes – learning, balance, resourcefulness, sportsmanship, passion and service.

The front side of the Honorary Panther medal awarded to children of Team IMPACT and The Scott Center’s social skills group. (FIT Image)

In the competition for the award, each submission will first be considered among other institutions from its conference.

An announcement of the conference award winners will be made in late December at

The national winner, runner-up and third-place finalist will be recognized on Jan. 16, 2016 at the NCAA Convention in San Antonio, Texas.

The top three finalists will each receive a cash prize with the national winner also earning a football or basketball national TV game in the 2016-17 season.

VIDEO: Florida Tech Being Considered For NCAA Division II Award of ExcellenceRelated Story:
VIDEO: Florida Tech Being Considered For NCAA Division II Award of Excellence

The Panthers have partnered with The Scott Center’s social skills program for a number of years. Over the course of the academic year, teams volunteer to be a part of a special skills activity emphasizing skill development in their sports.

FIT’s relationship with Team IMPACT started this past spring with two local children signing with the men’s and women’s lacrosse teams. Since then, the baseball, men’s soccer and softball teams have each welcomed a new member to their program.

About The Scott Center

The Scott Center for Autism Treatment on the FIT campus in Melbourne, Florida, was founded in 2009, and made possible by the generous support of Cheryl and Ed Scott, the Eckerd Family Foundation, other private donations and public funding.

The Center operates within Florida Institute of Technology’s College of Psychology & Liberal Arts and administers services for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and their families, ranging from parent education to structured behavioral therapies. In addition to serving children and families, the Center serves as a “teaching hospital” for graduate students, with supervision by doctoral-level faculty, and offers community training to schools and other organizations.

Visit the Scott Center on the web at

About Team IMPACT

Team IMPACT is an organization whose purpose is to improve the quality of life of children facing life-threatening and chronic illnesses by pairing children with college athletic teams. Team IMPACT children are drafted onto a team and become an official member of the team. The child gains great strength, camaraderie and support and the student-athletes are taught lessons about courage, resiliency and life perspective.

Visit Team IMPACT on the web at