Walk by the office of Dr. Sofia Hiort-Wright and most likely there are student-athletes in it getting academic help and advice.
Since arriving in 2009, Shaka Smart has sung the praises of Hiort-Wright for her ability to relate to the student-athletes and help them reach their academic goals.
The numbers back up that statement as the near 280 student-athletes at VCU have posted record-breaking academic numbers in recent years, including overall GPA and graduation rates. In the fall of 2012, the Rams posted an overall GPA of over 3.0, a first in the department’s 45-year history.
Hiort-Wright knows the VCU way well as she spent four years as a member of the women’s tennis program before joining the department staff full-time in 2002. Since then, she has worked her way up to her current title, Associate Vice Provost of Student Services & Sr. Associate Athletic Director for Academic Support, and has recently take on the role of the department’s Senior Women’s Administrator.
Hiort-Wright oversees all support services for VCU’s student athletes, provides academic and personal counseling and monitors the academic progress and eligibility of the athletes under NCAA rules.
A member of the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics (N4A), Hiort-Wright received her bachelor’s from VCU in 1998, as well as her master’s in social work a year later. Hiort-Wright completed her Ph.D in education in 2006.
Hiort-Wright is a native of Uppsala, Sweden and spent eight years on the nation’s national team. Hiort-Wright and her husband, Mervyn have two children, a daughter, Olivia, and a son, Noah.