Clock Chasers’s Bryant Commits to William Penn University
Camden -(December 6) On Thursday, Collingswood High’s Deriana Bryant announced publicly she
had committed to William Penn University and signed her Letter of Intent live in front of family,
friends and track club teammates. The signing seals the deal for her four-year Track & Field
scholarship to the NAIA school awarded on the basis of her performances in the shotput, discus
and javelin. Deriana was First Team All Conference in Group 1’s Colonial Conference and finished
in 3rd place at USATF Regionals 2018. Her strongest event is the discus where she has consistently
earned top honors since she was in the 11-12 age group. Earlier this year, she broke the UAGTCA
record for 17-18 Women with a throw of 114’.
In addition to her accomplishments in the field, Deriana has also consistently excelled in the classroom the last four years. Currently a senior at Collingswood, she maintains a 3.75 G.P.A. and has earned honor roll multiple times throughout her high school career. Although many athletes focus strictly on their sport for scholarship opportunities, Deriana did not underestimate the importance of pushing hard in the classroom as well. Deriana said she had to prioritize school work before heading to practice each day. "I knew I had to get my work done as soon as I get home because once practice starts it's go time, so I always try to get it done before practice even starts."
Thursday’s celebration began with some opening words from her father & club coach LaVar Edwards, and continued with recognition from assistant coaches and family. The audience included many of the youth of the Camden Clock Chasers club team of which Deriana has been a part since 2013. Edwards, who also provides athletic counseling through his company “Forget-Me-Not Athletics” explained the event served a dual purpose: to congratulate Deriana and provide an example to the young Clock Chasers in attendance. Edwards acknowledged the impact an event like this can have on an athlete, "our little ones are watching... they've seen Deriana's hard work and now see her select a school. In the Fall, they will notice she is not here... but they'll also know where she is. Highlighting accomplishments can help other kids realize a college scholarship is doable: 'Hey, I can make this happen - just like Deriana.'" In years past, signing events traditionally were reserved for highly-recruited D-1 players, but that tradition is changing. In 2016, Michelle Obama launched 'National Signing Day' for all students, not just athletes. In Deriana's case, her athletic scholarship is at an NAIA school which is a smaller association of schools than the NCAA. But to Edwards point, the accomplishment of obtaining a scholarship is something to be celebrated - no matter the size of the school.
Deriana’s journey at William Penn will begin in the Fall of 2019. As a member of the class of 2023, she will have the opportunity to further her education with little cost to her parents due to her own efforts both on the track and in the classroom. Deriana says she is relieved the selection process is over and is looking forward to becoming a Stateswoman in the Fall, "I'm excited to join the team and see what college life is like. I'm looking forward to meeting new people and learning more about the midwest - to see if the culture is different. But mainly I'm glad I made my choice!"
A big congrats to Deriana, your C3 Family is proud that you have decided to reach higher by continuing your education & athletic endeavors. We look forward to what you will accomplish next!