BETHLEHEM, Pa. – Lehigh men’s lacrosse senior Ryan Snyder has been named a candidate for the prestigious Senior CLASS Award, as announced on Wednesday. One of only 20 candidates in the nation and three in the Patriot League, the award recognizes student-athletes with notable achievements in four areas – community, classroom, character and competition. Snyder is a two-time All-Patriot League performer while excelling in the classroom and community as well.
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.
Snyder is Lehigh’s first honoree since Jonathan Stumpf, who was named a finalist for the award two years ago. The candidate list will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, and those 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 finalist who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition. The Senior CLASS Award winner will be announced during the 2013 NCAA Lacrosse Championships in Philadelphia May 25-27.
The Reading, Pa. native owns a strong 3.26 GPA as a Finance Major and Minor in Applied Mathematics (Concentration in Probability and Statistics). Ryan owns a 4.0 GPA in his major while posting a 3.78 GPA his junior year. Snyder is a consistent member of the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll while garnering the Faculty Athletics Council Award as well. Snyder made the Dean’s List each of the last two fall semesters for semester GPAs of 3.92 and 3.62, respectively. Ryan was a high honor roll student, AP scholar and class representative at Kent High School in Kent, Connecticut. He also wrote a weekly blog during the 2012 season posted on the website Lacrosse Playground.
Snyder has some impressive experience in his studied field (Finance), working for Morgan Stanley last summer as Summer Analyst, Sales and Trading Division. Some of his tasks included rotating through various desks in both Equities and Fixed Income, preparing a thorough report on the Canadians banking industry, developing an Excel model to analyze break-even prices, and more. The summer prior, Snyder served as Wealth Management Division, Financial Intern at Wells Fargo. He was then invited back during winter break of his junior year based on his strong summer performance.
A team leader as an upperclassman, Snyder is looked up to by his teammates. Snyder has taken part in Lehigh’s Emerging Leaders program, among numerous leadership programs. Emerging Leaders is a voluntary program and prerequisite for Lehigh’s Leadership Legacies. Throughout his experiences, Snyder learned basic leadership and self-assessment skills. Ryan was also an Alumni Relations Committee member.
Snyder and the Lehigh Men’s Lacrosse team participate in a number of community initiatives, especially in the fall when the Mountain Hawks go through an especially extensive community service program. One highlight came when they worked at South Mountain Park, hauling fallen tree limbs, logs and branches out of the main park areas, pavilions and the Frisbee golf course. The team started at sunrise and worked continuously for approximately two hours, consistently fitting in community service amidst a busy fall schedule.
Snyder (and other Lehigh student-athletes) have aided at local Donegan Elementary School in South Bethlehem, helping the children learn to read, helping them with homework, playing board games and more. One special event, which Snyder and the lacrosse team take part in, is Lehigh’s annual Adopt-A-Family around the holidays. Each Lehigh Athletics team adopts an underprivileged family; they then raise money throughout the semester to purchase holiday presents for their adopted family. The event wraps up with an event where all the student-athletes present the gifts to the families. Last year, the Mountain Hawks raised nearly $30,000.
Snyder’s community involvement is truly endless. He and the Mountain Hawks have also spent time selling HEADstrong T-Shirts, removing tarp before football games, putting on a Community Night Lacrosse Clinic for Lehigh Valley youngers, and more.
On the field, Snyder has impressed as one of the nation’s top faceoff specialists. He won 62 percent of his draws sophomore year (173-of-281) with a Patriot League record 118 groundballs. Snyder was named a Tewaaraton Award candidate prior to his junior season; he went on to win 50 percent (141-of-281) with 97 groundballs. A two-time All-Patriot League honoree, Snyder entered the season with 352 career faceoff wins and 239 groundballs along with five goals and an assist. One of those goals came in the 2012 NCAA Tournament vs. Maryland to give Lehigh a 7-6 lead.
One of Snyder’s highlight games came against North Carolina last March as he won 13-of-20 against the Tar Heels and their All-American R.G. Keenan. That proved crucial in Lehigh’s 9-8 upset win at #4 North Carolina. Snyder was named to the Patriot League All-Tournament Team following a bounce back performance against Colgate, helping Lehigh to its first-ever Patriot League Tournament Title and NCAA Tournament appearance. The Mountain Hawks finished the season 14-3, falling to eventual national finalist Maryland on a goal in the final seconds.
Lehigh is 2-0 so far this season behind a 14-1 win over Saint Joseph’s and 11-9 triumph at Villanova. Snyder has won 62 percent of his faceoffs thus far (24-of-39) to go with 13 groundballs and a pair of goals.
The Mountain Hawks returns to action on Saturday as they travel to Denver, Colorado to face #11 Denver Pioneers and Air Force on Sunday as part of the Face-Off Classic.