What’s Your Problem response:

GVL / Marissa Dillon

GVL / Marissa Dillon

All college students have heard of the infamous Freshman 15. But how easy is it for Grand Valley State University students to exercise on campus?

Caitlin Shea, a GVSU senior majoring in finance, lives and works in downtown Grand Rapids. All of her classes are in the L. William Seidman Center. Shea said it would be easier for business students like herself to have a place to exercise on the Pew Campus.

“It’s hard to find the time for an hour commute to get to and from Allendale to the gym,” Shea said. “I think it would be a great advantage to GVSU that would give the Pew Campus more of a stand-alone presence.”

Shea acknowledged that the recreation center on the Allendale Campus is a beneficial resource for many students. However, she has heard many students complaining about the lack of “a more efficient and friendly gym” downtown.

Although college life can be busy, Shea said making time for exercise is a very important habit to start.

“I think that exercising is incredibly important and allowing the business students easy access to the gym will help ensure our healthier lifestyles,” she said. “Staying in shape now, while busy with school and work, will set us up for good and healthy habits once we begin our careers. I think there is a huge missed opportunity here for GVSU to better prepare their students for their lives after college.”

Lisa Haynes, assistant vice president of Pew Campus operations and regional centers, said she has not heard of any plans to create an exercise facility for students on the Pew Campus.

“The university looks at any flat parking lots to be future development sites,” Haynes said. “Unfortunately, we do not have a vacant space available in our buildings on the Pew Campus to create a fitness center right now.”

Despite this, Haynes said there are a few options currently open for those interested in working out downtown. One of these is the fitness center in Winter Hall, which is free for students who live in Winter Hall and Secchia Hall. The YMCA, located across the street from the DeVos Center, is another option. GVSU faculty, staff and students can join at a discounted rate.

“GVSU negotiated a semester rate of $160 for students to use the YMCA,” Haynes said. “However, we have heard that students would enjoy additional work out options at the Pew Campus. I think the more opportunities to provide health and wellness are always welcome.”

For more information about fitness on campus, visit www.gvsu.edu/healthwellness.