Bellarmine becomes an ‘Exercise is Medicine’ campus

November 26, 2019

Bellarmine University is now a registered Exercise is Medicine – On Campus institution – an extension of the Exercise is Medicine global health initiative managed by the American College of Sports Medicine. 
Dr. Thomas Wójcicki, assistant professor in Bellarmine’s exercise science department, spearheaded the effort to bring this program to Bellarmine’s campus, with encouragement and support from Dr. Tony Brosky, dean of the School of Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences.
Exercise is Medicine – On Campus is designed to embolden campus communities to fully embrace and support a culture of physical activity, with a focus on improving the health and wellness of all its members – faculty, staff, and students. Goals of this campus-wide initiative include: 
  • making movement a part of daily campus culture
  • assessing physical activity at every student health visit
  • providing students with the tools necessary to strengthen healthy physical activity habits that can last a lifetime
  • connecting university health care providers with university health fitness specialists to provide a referral system for exercise prescription
As the supervisor and advisor of Bellarmine’s program, Dr. Wójcicki identified and assembled a leadership team earlier this year to help guide efforts at successfully implementing this program throughout campus and its neighboring communities. Along with Dr. Wójcicki, the current leadership team includes: 
  • Alice Kimble, RN, BSN, MS, PhD – director of the Office of Health Services
  • Chelsey Franz, PhD, ATC – assistant professor and coordinator of clinical education in the master of science in athletic training program
  • Mariana Flores – exercise science major in the health and wellness track with a minor in nutrition
  • Sarah McMurchie – exercise science major in the health and wellness track with a minor in nutrition
  • Kennedy Ricci, BHS – graduate student in the doctor of physical therapy program
  • Morgan Seppenfield - exercise science major in the sports performance track
As a result of their efforts, Bellarmine is an official member of the Exercise is Medicine – On Campus movement, joining 267 universities and colleges around the world.
While members of the School of Movement & Rehabilitation Sciences took the lead on bringing Exercise is Medicine – On Campus to campus, Dr. Wójcicki stresses that this initiative is not unique to, nor does it explicitly belong to, that school alone.
“Our goal is to encourage all disciplines and units across campus to adopt, contribute to, and take ownership of what’s meant to be a collaborative and engaging endeavor aimed at improving the health and well-being of our community via the promotion and support of physically active lifestyles,” he said.
Kimble, whose team in the Health Services Clinic focuses on health promotion, disease prevention and holistic health, agreed. “Because physical activity is a significant component to basic health care, I am very excited to partner with my colleagues and departments on campus to make our promotion of physical activity more visible by becoming an Exercise in Medicine campus,” she said. “Together we can improve our current efforts to keep the campus healthy by keeping the campus moving.”
Beyond its contributions to the health, the goals of the initiative closely align with the mission of the university, especially through a commitment to improve the human condition, as well embracing innovation and creativity, forging new and mutually beneficial partnerships, diversifying curricula and community, and providing a distinctive and transformative student experience.
“Physical activity is the key to life,” said Ricci, one of the student representatives. “There’s an activity for everyone to enjoy and experience the transformation it can have on our lives and campus. Exercise is Medicine is a great way to build Bellarmine’s community and encourage every Knight to be healthy in mind, body and spirit.”
“By having this program on campus, I envision a healthier, hopeful future centered around a strong sense of community through physical activity engagement, sustainable healthy lifestyle habits, and positive synergetic relationships among the people of Bellarmine University," said McMurchie, another student representative.
Over the coming months, Bellarmine’s Exercise is Medicine leadership team intends to further promote the initiative by raising awareness of the program’s existence, identifying additional partners across campus and implementing creative programming and events.
Wójcicki said they intend to promote a culture of physical activity by providing educational opportunities for the campus and surrounding communities, as well as by incorporating physical activity into health care services via the implementation of routine physical activity assessment and prescription.
Taking these steps will make Bellarmine eligible for the global initiative's recognition program, further solidifying the university’s commitment to create a culture of wellness on campus. As such, the leadership team encourages all members of the campus community to participate in the various activities and observances planned as part of the the initiative.
For more information or to learn how you can get involved, please contact Wojcicki at

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