Campus Rec improves services for students

GVL / Emily Frye

GVL / Emily Frye

Maddie Forshee

Grand Valley State University’s campus recreation department is a popular option for students to get fit and stay healthy during the school year. Not only does campus rec offer exercise classes, they offer a wealth of resources for students of all walks of life support and help for students to live their best life.

“We have a lot of programs and services that a lot of students aren’t aware of,” said Amy Campbell, associate director of campus rec. “We help lead healthy lifestyles and help (students) to navigate some of our space and other resources.”

Every school year, campus rec does their best to improve on specific areas of their operation. They do so in line with their values of inclusion, student learning and development, creating a space for students to develop not only their healthy bodies but their minds and habits, too.

“(We) selected our goals with a mindset of where we want to head,” said Kate Harmon, director of campus rec. “We look to set goals that align with our mission and vision as a department with particular attention paid to the university’s strategic plan.”

This year, campus rec is focused on continuing their long-held collaborative relationships with their campus partners. Through co-curricular workshops and programs, the department believes it can develop more well-rounded and better educated students.

“We’ve always identified really close partnerships that we’ve worked well with,” Campbell said. “They become, in a sense, our advocates and we advocate for their programs, so it works really well.”

Campus rec is an integral part of GVSU’s campus, which makes for a natural focus on campus identity. Because the department is so visible and accessible, they will continue to promote a healthy lifestyle, inclusive community and student development.

“We have a lot of challenges that we’re working with right now,” Campbell said. “We’re trying to work with some of those areas and are trying to continue to grow and not compete. We want to be there for the campus community.”

With the constant facilities improvements on campus, campus rec is also a key player in supporting project development and planning. The department helps to develop ways to effectively use the space they have now while planning to maximize the amount of space they will have once the Recreation Center project is over.

By constantly striving to reach new goals, campus rec helps to be an inclusive resource for many students on campus. From the fitness and wellness center to personalized UFit plants to smoking cessation sessions, campus rec has the student in mind.

The fitness and wellness center is the most used campus rec facility, located in the Recreation Center, offering massage services, nutrition plans and personal training as well as fitness assessment, health screenings and CPR classes. Many of the services offered by campus rec are free or at a low cost for students.

Campus rec also offers group exercise classes, a fun and easy way to stay fit while doing an activity students genuinely enjoy. The campus rec instructors teach to all fitness levels, so classes are open to anyone that wants to join.

With a variety of yoga classes from beginning to power yoga, spinning, toning, Zumba and Insanity, there’s a class for any students needs or interests.

“Try new things,” Harmon said. “We have so many opportunities that there will be something for you. We would love the opportunity to help you find your way to the program, team or service for you.”

Campbell said that because they offer many different services, the staff of campus rec are always open to talking to students.

“Connect with one of us, whether it’s our students staff of even our professional staff,” she said. “We’re trying to be more inclusive. We want to try to break down some of those barriers to allow for places and programs to be comfortable for anybody to be active in.”

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