UMSL student-athletes recognized by Tritons United

by | May 10, 2024

The students participated in bystander intervention training this spring.
Tritons United UMSL Athletics Awards

Members of UMSL Athletics were recognized by Tritons United for participating in bystander intervention training. (Photo by Derik Holtmann)

Competition is nothing new to the student-athletes at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, but for a few weeks this spring, they engaged in a friendly competition off the field. Over the course of March and April, UMSL student-athletes completed over 18 different sessions focused on bystander intervention training with Tritons United.

Tritons United provides preventative and responsive programming aimed at reducing gender-based violence, which has been supported over the past three years by a $300,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice. The bystander intervention training outlines different types of gender-based violence, intervention strategies, case scenarios and provides resources both on the UMSL campus and in the St. Louis community.

All NCAA schools are mandated to provide Title IX and sexual violence prevention training to students. Associate Athletic Director Jessica Chandler said UMSL Athletics wanted to find a way to make the experience more impactful for students and has partnered with Tritons United since its founding.

This marked the first year that awards were awarded to student-athletes for their participation.

“We wanted to highlight them to show that they are very active in creating a safe, healthy and inclusive environment for everybody here at UMSL and that they truly care about making sure that everybody is accepted and safe,” Tritons United Project Director Maggie Gross-Eldridge said. “They just did a great job of speaking and using their voices and being actively participatory, and saying they want positive changes in their campus and community.”

First-, second- and third-place awards were given out to the teams who showed exceptional participation in keeping the UMSL campus and students safe and healthy. The women’s volleyball team came in first place, men’s baseball won second place and men’s swimming came in third.

Tritons United UMSL Athletics Awards

The women’s volleyball team came in first place. (Photo by Derik Holtmann)


UMSL Athletics Tritons United Awards

The men’s baseball team won second place. (Photo by Derik Holtmann)


UMSL Athletics Tritons United Awards

Men’s swimming came in third place. (Photo by Derik Holtmann)

“All the student-athletes were excellent and all of them did a great job, but those three were just outstanding when it came to how they interacted with us and talked with us and they just took the learning out of the classroom by making it applicable to their lives currently,” Gross-Eldridge said.


Irene Travis

Irene Travis, an infielder on the women’s softball team, was one of two students to win individual awards from Tritons United. Travis worked closely with Tritons United during her social work practicum experience. (Photo by Derik Holtmann)

Additionally, Tritons United gave out two Upstander Awards to Irene Travis, an infielder on the women’s softball team, and Zach Unnerstall on the men’s golf team. Travis worked closely with Tritons United during her social work practicum experience, helping at resource tabling events and creating healthy relationship games for students on campus. Unnerstall, Gross-Eldridge said, blossomed into a leader this year and helped encourage other students to engage in the training.

Heather Riske

Heather Riske