Academic stars of Webster University chess team: Aaron Grabinsky, Tom Polgar, and Paul Truong, Jr. all have perfect 4.0 this past semester!
The highest GPA for a grandmaster is Peter Prohaszka (Hungary) with just almost 4.0 (just 1 A- and the rest A)!
The GMs average GPA is 3.61 (in spite of the fact that English is a 2nd, 3rd, or even 4th language for 7/8 of them) and about 3.5 for the entire team.
Even though they take their academic studies very seriously, it did not stop these students from training very hard in chess to win 6 straight PanAm InterCollegiate Championships, 7 straight Final Four Championships, 2 World Championships, Olympiad Gold, 4 World Open Championships, 49 National Titles while maintaining the #1 ranking for 6 straight years.
I realize that it is a big handicap and it weakens our program when I refuse to recruit students who do not take their education seriously. I simply reject their applications regardless of their ratings. And if after they get accepted and their grades are not at a minimum 3.0 (while many other schools only require 2.0), I revoke their scholarships as I have done in the past, no matter what their ratings were.
It is an embarrassment to College Chess when some universities used to recruit GMs who after a year or two could not complete one single class, or did not even know where their classrooms were located at. I understand that some coaches/directors will recruit anyone just to win. That will not happen at SPICE. We win by only 1 way, hard work, on and off the chess board.
So when the naysayers say that it is not possible to do everything, they are very wrong. Everything is possible when you are disciplined and want it bad enough. When parents entrust their sons and daughters to us, we will do our best to treat their children just as I would with my own children.
I am very proud of these students and this team.