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2009 Faculty & Staff News

Faculty members and students involved in "Spring Into Health"

April 10, 2009

Several faculty members and students in the Department of Health, Recreation & Kinesiology as well as student-athletes and coaches were involved in "Spring Into Health," a wellness fair March 24 at Prince Edward County Elementary School (PECES) sponsored by the Healthy Weight Coalition. The event's organizers included Dr. Phil Gapinski, Assistant Professor of Health Education; Dr. Matt Lucas, Assistant Professor of Physical and Health Education; and Dr. Jo Morrison, Assistant Professor of Exercise Science. Dr. Gapinski, Dr. Lucas and Dr. Morrison are part of the Healthy Weight Coalition, which addresses the problem of overweight children in the Piedmont Health District. In the event, at least 20 Longwood student-athletes from men's and women's teams handed out posters and schedules; the women's soccer team participated in a recess activity; and two student organizations, PHETE First (for future health and physical education teachers) and the Exercise Science Association also helped out. Among those who actively supported the event were Troy Austin, Director of Athletics, and coaches Kristin Caruso, Todd Dyer and Mike Gillian. The event included free health/wellness assessments including glucose screening, blood pressure screening and body composition testing, performed by students in Dr. Morrison's Exercise Testing and Prescription class; a dance contest; face painting; health information; and fun fitness stations. "The event, which we hope to make an annual event, was designed to introduce people to healthy eating and low-cost ways to increase physical activity," Dr. Morrison said. About 150 PECES students, family members and others from the community, including the Prince Edward County school superintendent, Dr. Patricia Watkins, attended the event.