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Bentley College Spiker Heidi Anderson Wins Honda Inspiration Award

May 4, 1998


WALTHAM, Mass. Bentley College senior Heidi Anderson, who battled back from leukemia to lead the Falcons volleyball team to the Northeast-10 Conference semifinals, has been named winner of the Honda Inspiration Award, presented annually to the collegiate woman athlete who has overcome great physical adversity to contribute to the recognizable success of her team.

Anderson, of Jamul, Calif. (Valhalla, H.S.), will be presented her award at the 32nd annual Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year Banquet, June 14 at Marco Island, Fla., site of the 1998 convention of the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics.

The 5-9 Anderson enjoyed great success as a starting outside hitter during her freshman and sophomore seasons, earning a berth on the All-Conference team and helping her team reach the 1993 NCAA Division II Northeast Regional Tournament. In November 1994, after struggling through practices and gradually feeling weaker throughout her sophomore year, she was diagnosed with leukemia and immediately began chemotherapy treatments in Boston and San Diego.

A year later, the leukemia had returned and Anderson underwent a live-or-die bone marrow transplant. Her sister, a former volleyball player at the Air Force Academy and now a military pilot, was a perfect match. Anderson returned to Bentley in 1996 and fought to regain her strength and volleyball skills, while being a team leader from the bench.

With renewed determination, Anderson was back on the court for her senior season, in a new role as back-row defensive specialist, contributing 256 digs and 46 service aces. She was named team captain, started every match and led the Falcons to the semifinals-ironically, right where she had left off three years previously. She will graduate with honors and, despite her illness, achieved Dean's List or President's list in each of her semesters at Bentley.

In addition to the Honda Inspiration Award won by Anderson, the Honda Award is presented annually to the most outstanding collegiate woman athletes in 11 sports, who are also candidates to receive the Honda-Broderick Cup as 1997-98 Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year. The winner is determined by separate balloting of all NCAA-member institutions. Last year's Cup winner was University of Notre Dame soccer player Cindy Daws.

This year's candidates are: Kristin Folkl of Stanford University (volleyball), Chamique Holdsclaw of the University of Tennessee (basketball), Misty Hyman of Stanford University (swimming & diving), Carrie Tollefson of Villanova University (cross-country), Cindy Werely of the University of North Carolina (field hockey), and Sara Whalen of the University of Connecticut (soccer). They will be joined later this year by other women collegiate athletes voted as the most outstanding in the sports of golf, softball, tennis, and track & field.

Also being honored at the banquet with Honda Awards are the Collegiate Women Athletes of the Year representing NCAA Division II and Division III schools.

The awards program is sponsored by American Honda Motor Co., Inc.

BENTLEY UNIVERSITY is one of the nation’s leading business schools, dedicated to preparing a new kind of business leader – one with the deep technical skills, broad global perspective, and high ethical standards required to make a difference in an ever-changing world. Our rich, diverse arts and sciences program, combined with an advanced business curriculum, prepares informed professionals who make an impact in their chosen fields. Located on a classic New England campus minutes from Boston, Bentley is a dynamic community of leaders, scholars and creative thinkers. The Graduate School emphasizes the impact of technology on business practice, in offerings that include MBA and Master of Science programs, PhD programs in accountancy and in business, and customized executive education programs. The university enrolls approximately 4,100 full-time undergraduate, 140 adult part-time undergraduate, 1,430 graduate, and 43 doctoral students. Bentley is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges; AACSB International – The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business; and the European Quality Improvement System, which benchmarks quality in management and business education. For more information, please visit

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