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St. Anselm announced on Tuesday that it has applied to enter the exploratory phase of NCAA Division III membership for all athletic programs.

“We evaluated our academic, geographic, and athletic profile, along with our overall vision and strategic goals, and it became very clear that we were a better fit with the majority of Division III schools. If we are accepted, it will be an exciting opportunity for us to grow as an institution- recommitting to our mission and values, while promoting academic and athletic excellence,” says Dr. Steven R. DiSalvo, the university president.

In a press release, the school said that the college was recently ranked 13th in the nation for community service, and experiential learning is an integral part of the Saint Anselm College experience. Membership in Division III would provide increased access to these types of opportunities, otherwise unavailable to student-athletes with demanding year-round athletic schedules. Additionally, less travel time to competing institutions would mean less time out of class for student-athletes.

This announcement comes at the same time Merrimack is exploring options to advance its athletic program to Division I. St. Anselm and Merrimack are currently both members of the Northeast-10 Conference in Division II.

Mike McMahon is in his 12th year covering Merrimack College for The Eagle Tribune and is the founder and managing editor of The Mack Report. Mike also serves on staff as a senior writer at College Hockey News. Follow him on Twitter @MikeMcMahonCHN

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