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Exercise is Medicine

Exercise is Medicine recognizes University for efforts to create culture of wellness

Dr. Carena Winters, Dr. Kristin Alberts, Dr. Buffy Maetozo and Kinesiology master’s student Jackie Baldwin helped Jacksonville University again earn gold level designation from the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Exercise is Medicine® On Campus (EIM-OC) program for their efforts to create a culture of wellness on campus.

“Jacksonville University is committed to creating a culture of daily movement on campus, positively influencing all those who study, work and live on campus,” said Dr. Winters, Associate Professor of Kinesiology and Director of the University’s Healthy Campus initiatives. “I believe it is our obligation to provide opportunities for students to be healthy and improve well-being. I am grateful to work with a group of dedicated professionals at JU who contribute to the efforts being recognized.”

EIM-OC launched its recognition program in 2014 to honor campuses for their efforts to create a culture of wellness. Schools earn gold, silver or bronze status based on their activities. Gold level campuses have created a referral system where campus health care providers assess student physical activity and refer students as necessary to a certified fitness professional as part of medical treatment. Jacksonville University also achieved gold level status in 2019.

To become one of the 77 campuses to earn achieve gold level recognition this year, Dr. Winters collaborated with Dr. Alberts, Director of the University’s Student Counseling Center, to monitor patients’ physical activity as a vital sign and refer patients who did not meet the physical activity recommendations to a personal trainer.

If patients accepted the referral, they were assigned a personal trainer for eight free individual sessions and the option to continue with small group sessions. Kinesiology undergraduate student interns and Kinesiology graduate students led the personal training sessions under the supervision of Dr. Winters and Dr. Maetozo, Assistant Professor of Kinesiology.

Dr. Maetozo reviewed exercise assessments and prescriptions prior to implementation. A special thanks go out to Kinesiology graduate student and EIM graduate assistant Ms. Jackie Baldwin for her leadership in this gold-level achievement.

Dr. Heather Hausenblas, Dr. Jeff White, Dr. Cathy Saenz, Professor Mandy Milla, and undergraduate and graduate students in Kinesiology, Dr. Megan Bewernitz in Occupational Therapy, Ms. Toni Higgs in the Career Resource Center, and Dr. Cari Coble-Freiberger in Dance have previously contributed to helping the University earn silver and bronze level status. Silver campuses engage students, faculty and staff in education initiatives and make movement part of the daily campus culture. Bronze level campuses promote and generate awareness of the health benefits of physical activity.

Of the 166 campuses recognized this year, 77 received gold, 62 silver and 27 bronze. All gold, silver and bronze universities and colleges will be officially recognized on May 27 as part of the 11th World Congress on Exercise is Medicine, held in conjunction with ACSM’s 67th Annual Meeting.