Ashton Miller-Millancon in Queen's yellow football uniform running on the field.

Ashton Miller-Melancon, defensive back on the Queen's Football team and third-year student in the Faculty of Arts and Science. (Robin Kasem)

Queen's Football player named a U SPORTS Top 8 Academic All-Canadian

Queen's Football's Ashton Miller-Melancon was recently named a Top 8 Academic All-Canadian for the 2022-23 season by U SPORTS, a recognition that celebrates the eight best and brightest university student-athletes from across Canada.

"These eight outstanding individuals represent the more than 4,900 U SPORTS student-athletes who achieved excellence in the classroom and on the field of play this past year," said U SPORTS CEO Pierre Arsenault. "They're the crème-de la-crème of Canadian students, and we are fortunate to have the support of the Governor General and the Speaker of the House as we recognize our Top 8 Academic All-Canadians."

U SPORTS student-athletes achieve Academic All-Canadian status for maintaining an average of 80 per cent or better over the academic year while competing for one – or more – of their university's teams that participate within U SPORTS.

In recognition of their achievements, a ceremony was held in Ottawa to present the student-athletes with the Governor General's Medal for Academic Excellence. They were also honoured in a reception on Parliament Hill hosted by The Honourable Greg Fergus, P.C., M.P, Speaker of the House of Commons.

Ashton Miller-Melancon infront of a USports black backdrop.

Miller-Melancon officially received his recognition in Ottawa in February. (James Paddle-Grant)

Miller-Melancon is an achiever in the classroom and on the football field. Hailing from Dorval, Que., Miller-Melancon, who is part of the Faculty of Arts & Science, pursuing a major in Health Studies and a minor in Employment Relations, recorded a perfect 4.30 grade point average during the 2022-23 season  while earning his first nod as a U SPORTS First Team All-Canadian in football after having earned All-Rookie Team honours from the OUA the previous year.

"Ashton is a great student-athlete," said Queen's Football Head Coach Steve Snyder. "He is a role model for his teammates when it comes to balancing success on and off the field. He is always prepared, organized and thorough in everything he does. He has achieved a great deal of success on the field and in the classroom because of this. He is constantly assisting his teammates and helping push them to be more successful. Ashton exemplifies the characteristics of a student athlete with his work ethic, commitment to success and ability to support others around him. He is one of the most respected students we have coached and is an outstanding teammate. Ashton is widely respected across the league from both opposing coaches and players. He has received All-Conference and All-Canadian recognition."

The two-time U SPORTS Academic All-Canadian defensive back finished the 2022 season third in Canada with three interceptions while adding 25 tackles. His 11 career interceptions and 165 return yards off interceptions tie him for eighth all-time in Queen's University football annals.

"Ashton Miller-Melancon is an incredibly accomplished student-athlete who has had an outstanding career at Queen's to-date," said Executive Director, Queen's Athletics & Recreation Linda Melnick. "He made his mark in his first year when named to the OUA All Rookie Team and earned the Royal Todd as Queen's Football's Rookie of the Year in 2021-22, and has continued to build on that success in each and every year. In 2022-23, Ashton was named a U SPORTS First Team All-Canadian and an OUA First Team All-Star. His on-field accolades are matched in the classroom, earning Academic All-Canadian recognition in successive years since arriving on campus. Ashton displays all of the qualities that we hold in high regard for Queen's and U SPORTS student-athletes, and I have every confidence that he will continue to find success in all that he does."

He has been awarded four academic awards, including the Pollack M. Foundation Award, Ted Reeves Memorial Award, Rassumen Athletic Financial Award and the Erie Todd Award while volunteering with the Kingston Housing Co-op and the Partners in Mission Foodbank Tackle Hunger Initiative.

Along with Miller-Melancon (Dorval, Que.), Acadia University's Haley McDonald (Port Williams, N.S.), Aidan Goslett (Toronto, Ont.) of Dalhousie University, Emmy Fecteau (St-Odilon, Que.) from Concordia University, Yoan David (Sherbrooke, Que.) of the University of Sherbrooke, University of Waterloo's Hannah Blair  (Waterloo, Ont.), Jordan Canham  (Avonmore, Ont.) of the University of Alberta and Madisson Lawrence (Winnipeg, Man.) of the University of Manitoba were honoured for their academic and sporting excellence.

Note: This article originally appeared in the Queen's Gazette.