Kinesiology Program

Madison Trebour ’19, B.S., Kinesiology, Longwood University

Madison Trebour

Internship/Experiences: Biomech Fitness Facility, Zacharias Gainey Health Institute

Campus Activities: Wesley Campus Ministry, Longwood Company of Dancers, Longwood Ambassadors, Phi Epsilon Kappa

Post-grad plans: Working with Biomech

Why Longwood? I love the small town and small-school feel, especially in our program—it really feels like a family.

Are you where you thought you’d be when you first came to campus? I am not! I have become way more involved both on campus and within our department than I thought I would be.

Who helped you get to where you are now? Dr. Morrison has helped a lot!

Advice for future and current students? Don’t be afraid to say yes to new things! Longwood has a lot to offer but you have to be willing to branch out and try things you might be scared of. It could turn out to be the best thing you’ve ever done!

Madison Cutten ’19, B.S., Kinesiology and Health Education minor, Longwood University

Madison Cutten

Activities: Fitness Supervisor, Personal Trainer, Group Exercise Instructor, Student Wellness Ambassador, Late Night Committee, Phi Epsilon Kappa, Cormier Honors College and Mortar Board.

Internship/Experiences: Corporate Wellness Facility at IDEXX Laboratories

Post-grad plans: Graduate Assistant

Why Longwood? I chose Longwood for its small class sizes and the opportunities it presented. I felt that at Longwood I would not be just another number and that I’d have the ability to make a difference and gain experience.

Are you where you thought you’d be when you first came to campus? Yes and no. While I always knew I wanted to work for Campus Recreation since I was a freshman, I never thought that I’d be involved in so many different jobs there and how it would relate to and benefit my kinesiology courses.

Who helped you get to where you are now? My professors in the HARK department and the Campus Recreation professional staff members, especially Alina Cioletti, assistant director of fitness and wellness.

Advice for future and current students? My advice would be to get involved in as many jobs, clubs, and activities as you can. Not only does this allow you to gain experience early on, but you also get to meet a wide variety of new people.

Ryan Lis ’19, B.S., Kinesiology, Longwood University

Ryan Lis

Activities: Working out, cycling, reading, basketball

Internship/Experiences: Barwis Methods Holistic Human Performance, VCU Sport Performances, Baker’s Baseball Conditioning Camp S&C assistant, and Longwood University Physical Intellectual Emotional (PIE) active wellness challenge instructor

Post-grad plans: Attending graduate school for exercise physiology

Why Longwood? I chose Longwood because professors get to know who you are and the classes are small. The kinesiology program is very hands-on and offers classes for different areas of interests. Also, the faculty are very knowledgeable and helpful.

Are you where you thought you’d be when you first came to campus? Yes, I knew it was going to be hard, but I just kept putting in the hard work and knew I would eventually get on the path to where I want to be.

Who helped you get to where you are now? My classmates and Dr. Jo Morrison.

Advice for future and current students? Study, work hard, find a habit, and make friends

Ellen Sweat Turner ’17, B.S., Kinesiology/Concentration in Exercise Science, Longwood University

Ellen Sweat Turner ’17


Current position/employment: Student, Doctor of Physical Therapy program, Radford University

Activities: During my time at Longwood I was involved in many extracurricular activities, clubs, and organizations in which I held a leadership role in many.

Academically, I was a member of the following Honors Fraternities: Alpha Lambda Delta, Phi Epsilon Kappa, Phi Kappa Phi, Sigma Alpha Pi, Order of Omega, and Mortar Board.

Recreationally I was a part of Delta Zeta sorority, Exercise Science Association, She’s the First club, Amor Club, and club softball. I enjoyed hiking on High Bridge Trail with my dog and personal training at the Health and Recreation Center.

Internship/Experiences: I completed my undergraduate internship at HCA Virginia Sports Medicine in Richmond, VA. My internship was split between physical therapy and strength and conditioning which allowed the wholesome opportunity to be able to observe the two occupations working in an interprofessional manner. I was able to use the knowledge I had gained from the kinesiology curriculum and apply it to the type of clients/patients that I want to work within my future career as a physical therapist.

Why Longwood? I chose Longwood because of the small school aspect. I was never just a number and my major professors truly cared about me and my future. Living in a small town and going to a small school was awesome because you always have a familiar face around to ask for help when you need it. Also, the Health and Fitness Center was a huge amenity that provided a safe place to clear your mind and maintain a healthy lifestyle without judgment or ridicule. The facility also provided me with a personal training opportunity to further allow me to apply my knowledge and skill and get paid!

Peak experience at Longwood? My peak experience at Longwood was becoming the Chapter President of my sorority. This opportunity opened up so many doors for me and I found myself becoming more and more involved on campus and in the community. This particular leadership position required a heavy amount of responsibility, leadership, accountability, and many others which are all great attributes to have gained for when I was put in the real world.

Daishan Johnson ’16, B.S., Kinesiology, Longwood University M.S. Applied Physiology and Kinesiology, University of Florida, 2018


Current position/employment: Exercise Specialist at Capital One

Activities: exercising, listening to music, hanging out with friends, perfecting my craft

Internship/Experiences: My internship experiences included working for Liberty Strength and Conditioning in undergrad and interning for EXOS during my graduate tenure at the University of Florida. At Liberty, I primarily worked with the football team. At EXOS, I worked with professional and collegiate athletes including NFL, NFL Combine, MLB, & MLS.

Why Longwood? Longwood felt like home from the day I stepped foot there. To be honest, I did not plan on attending college after high school. It was the perfect place at the perfect time and I decided to take a leap of faith. Longwood provided me with so many opportunities—from Greek Life to various organizations that helped mold me into the man I am today.

Peak experience at Longwood? My entire senior year was fun at Longwood. I accomplished a lot within my organizations and around the campus. Be sure to enjoy yourself as much as you can throughout the years. I also got into grad school my senior year which was pretty exciting as well.

Advice for future and current students? Get as much experience as you can! Volunteering or interning at various places while you’re at Longwood is extremely important. Everyone wants to get experience, and volunteer/intern work will get your foot in the door. Also, don’t stress out too much in school. Find some ways to manage that stress. Don’t let minor things take your peace. You should enjoy college to the fullest but don’t forget to keep your priorities in line. If you work hard, everything else will work out for the best.

Therapeutic Recreation Program

Andraya Jackson, 2021, Therapeutic Recreation

Headshot of Andraya Jackson, Class of 2021 Therapeutic Recreation student

What activities are you involved in? Therapeutic Recreation Organization (TRO) Historian

What have been your internship fieldwork experiences so far?

Westminster Canterbury of Lynchburg, Centra PACE, Chesterfield Parks & Recreation, Westminster Canterbury of Richmond, Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Medical Center, Piedmont Geriatric Hospital

What are your post graduation plans?

I'd love to work in a long term care facility with older adults who have dementia or in a rehab setting for adults.

Why Longwood?

After a year at another school, I felt like I wasn't getting the learning experience I wanted. I always knew I would do something to help people. While looking over different majors at Longwood, I found therapeutic recreation and knew that's what I wanted to pursue.

Are you where you thought you'd be when you first came to campus?

No, but in a good way. I am learning more at Longwood than I ever could have anticipated. I've gotten excellent hands-on experience in all areas of the field that are surely preparing me well for the future.

Who helped you get to where you are now?

My close friends in the major. Early mornings or late nights, they are there for me. I couldn't ask for a more supportive group of people--and that's talking about the major as a whole.

Advice for current and future TR students?

Find ways to cope with stress. It's bound to happen and the quicker you get into a habit of dealing with it, the easier everything else becomes.

Darcy King ‘18, B.S., Therapeutic Recreation, Longwood University

2018 Alumnae Darcy King, Therapeutic Recreation

Where were your internships?

I completed my junior internship with the Hampton Veteran Affairs Medical Center’s Spinal Cord Unit. I completed my senior internship with Virginia Beach Therapeutic Recreation Programs.

What Campus Activities were involved in while at LU?

I was involved with Longwood’s Therapeutic Recreation Organization, Kappa Delta- Alpha Chapter, and Phi Epsilon Kappa- the Health, Athletic Training, Recreation, and Kinesiology Honor Society. I also engaged in intramural sports, such as soccer and basketball.

What have you been doing professionally since graduation?

Since graduating, I have worked as the full-time Recreation Therapist on Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital’s Behavioral Health Unit. I work with 24 patients a day in both a group therapy and 1:1 setting. I use a strengths-based model, where patient-centered care is of utmost importance in my facilitations. My goal is to promote healthy leisure skills and activities, enhance health and leisure-based coping methods, empower positive self-esteem and self-worth, and increase concentration and thought processing skills.

Why Longwood?

Longwood stood out to me the first time I toured. The programs and structure of Longwood’s academic curriculums really stood out to me- I felt instantly that even in my general education classes, that I would be building rapport with my professors, due to the smaller class sizes. Longwood just had that “at home” feeling to it, and I knew that Longwood was the school for me once discovering that sense of familiarity when I toured campus for the first time.

Have you achieved what you thought you would when you first came to LU?

I ended up switching majors to Therapeutic Recreation my sophomore year, so my senior year ending looked different than what I predicted as a freshman. After my switch, I was still able to work toward obtaining the goal of becoming a professional in the medical field and pursue my passion of helping others.

Who helped you get to where you are now?

Dr. Lynch helped me transition my sophomore year over to the Therapeutic Recreation program. She worked hard with me to create a schedule so I would be able to graduate the same year as intended, as well as working with me to obtain my dream internship with the V.A. Dr. Whitely helped me further my passion to work in the mental health field through her passion of working with people who struggle with emotional processing and life’s curveballs. Through her mental health class and her stories of her experiences, I was able to navigate toward a career path that I find myself fully engaged in and fulfilling my overall purpose.

Advice for current and future TR students?

I always give the advice to pursue a challenge. The real world is full of challenges, and you have to learn to adapt on the fly and work with someone and not against them. Always give it your all in facilitations, and ask questions if you feel discomfort or if something doesn’t feel right. Working with individuals of all different backgrounds has shown me that flexibility is key!

Nate Wilson ‘18, B.S. Therapeutic Recreation, Longwood University

Head shot of Nate Wilson, 2018 Alumni  Therapeutic RecreationWhere were your internships?

I completed my internships at Fairfax County Parks and Recreation and Northern Virginia Mental Health Institute.

What Campus Activities were involved in while at LU?

While at LU I was the Historian for TRO, and played ultimate frisbee.

What have you been doing professionally since graduation?

Since graduation, I’ve journeyed across the country visiting facilities that offer TR to better my practice. I settled down in Seattle, and currently, work as the Activities Director at a skilled nursing facility.

Why Longwood?

I chose LU because they have the best professors and the best TR program in the country!

Have you achieved what you thought you would when you first came to LU?

I’ve achieved everything I thought I would and more. My experiences at LU, primarily in fieldwork, set the foundation for my facilitation style and helped me build the confidence needed to be the leader I am today.

Who helped you get to where you are now?

My parents have supported every decision I’ve ever made, even if that meant moving 3,000 miles across the country.

Advice for current and future TR students?

My advice would be to apply for internships you don’t think you’d enjoy. Odds are your mind will change!