When Dr. Linda Van Drie-Andrzjewski started working for the Wilmington University in Student Affairs in 2001, the director of athletics title didn’t exist.
Ten years later, when she was named the University’s first AD, she quickly made the Athletic Department one of the best in the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference and even the East Region.
Now, after six years as AD, Dr. Van Drie-Andrzjewski has moved on to a new role: executive director of Title IX, Cleary Act, and Regulatory Affairs for the University. (Dr. Stefanie Whitby has assumed the role of AD.) It’s not unfamiliar territory for Van Drie-Andrzjewski. Before becoming AD, she spent the previous nine years as the athletic department’s associate athletic director for Compliance and the Senior Woman Administrator.
Her tenure as AD has been filled with landmark accomplishments. When she joined the Athletic Department in 2001, the Wildcats were a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), a much smaller association of schools than the more well known National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). Due to the dwindling numbers of NAIA opponents in the tri-state area, it was decided that the University needed to attain NCAA status.
The process to join the NCAA is in-depth and drawn out, but thanks to Dr. Van Drie-Andrzjewski’s skill and knowledge of compliance, the Wildcats made the jump in the 2004–05 season.
The next milestone occurred a year after she became AD, when the 20,000-square-foot WU Athletics Complex and turf field on Route 40 in Newark was completed. It became the hub for a successful run of Wildcat sports. Under Dr. Van Drie-Andrzjewski, the Wildcats brought home 17 CACC championships, 17 berths in the NCAA Division II East Regional Tournament, and six trips to the NCAA Division II National Tournament. The golf team has won two Super Regional events, while the baseball team won the East Regional Tournament in 2015.
Since 2011, she has overseen the addition of five sports: women’s bowling, women’s tennis, men’s lacrosse, and most recently, men’s and women’s track and field.
Dr. Van Drie-Andrzjewski also has been active the NCAA. She recently became chair of the NCAA Division II Legislation Committee and has provided leadership on the Division II Academic Requirements Committee, the National High School Review Committee, the Division II Degree Completion Scholarship Selection Committee, and the Division II Academic Requirements Task Force. During her tenure on both the Academic Requirements Committee and Academic Requirements Task Force, Division II made sweeping changes to its academic eligibility requirements through the passage of the Path to Graduation legislation. She is also a 2009 graduate of the NCAA Fellows Leadership Program and a graduate of the NACWAA/HERS institute.
Few have known and worked with Van Drie-Andrzjewski as long as Assistant Athletic Director/Senior Woman Administrator Erin Harvey, a 2001 graduate of the Sports Management program at Wilmington, a program in which she has been a professor in for more than two decades.
“I have known and respected Dr. Drie-Andrzjewski for over 20 years, first as a student in her Sports Management classes, then working alongside her administratively in the athletic department,” says Harvey. “In each of those capacities, she has led, taught, and inspired with purpose, passion, and integrity. What she has done for the Athletic Department, including the student-athletes and coaches she’s served, is enormous. Linda transitioned us from a very uncertain time in the department and played a huge role in helping our program develop and rise to new heights. Dr. Drie-Andrzjewski should head into her future endeavors proud of the significant impact she has had on the success of Wilmington athletics.” Wu