Shepherd University is one of six West Virginia colleges that just entered into an agreement with the West Virginia National Guard (WVNG) to provide help with the Guard’s Fitness Training Program. Under the memorandum of understanding (MOU), students from the Department of Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Sport Studies (HPERS) and the Department of Nursing Education will gain experience working with Air and Army Guard unit members, and their families, who participate in the program, which is designed to provide a holistic approach to physical fitness and wellness.

Dr. Stacey Kendig

Dr. Stacey Kendig, acting dean for and chair of the Department of HPERS, who represented Shepherd at the MOU signing in Charleston on December 14, said students majoring in health promotion exercise science—and who are interning at the Wellness Center—will help develop a fitness program as well as a one-week fit camp that will take place next year.

“Part of what the students are going to do is help the Guard members, depending on what their needs and physical capabilities are, do a weight-loss diet, work on nutrition, and develop an exercise program,” Kendig explained. “This is a really great opportunity for the student interns to give back to the community and have a positive impact on folks from the state of West Virginia.”

Dr. Sharon Mailey, acting dean for and chair of the Department of Nursing Education, said her department is honored to be able to help the National Guard fulfill its mission of maintaining a ready force.

Dr. Sharon Mailey

“This partnership with the Guard and Shepherd will provide an excellent opportunity for our graduate nursing students in the Doctor of Nursing Practice/Family Nurse Practitioner program to evaluate outcomes and monitor fitness levels,” she noted. “Our student capstone projects might focus on physical fitness, nutrition, and readiness issues. We’re thrilled to participate in the readiness of our armed forces, who contribute so much to our national security.”

The MOU says the universities will provide services such as nutrition lectures and counseling, meal plan recommendations, food preparation classes, strength and cardio training lectures and demonstrations, group and individual counseling, exercise programs, and instruction at quarterly fit camps—and, as requested, at monthly drills.

The other universities that signed the MOU are West Virginia State, University of Charleston, Marshall, West Virginia University, and Davis and Elkins College.


— ARTICLE SUBMITTED BY: Shepherd University

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