American College of Sports Medicine recognizes Hazleton for wellness culture

Group of people walking downhill on a road surrounded by fall foliage.

Penn State Hazleton was recognized by the American College of Sports Medicine in March for its dedication to creating a culture of wellness for students.

Credit: Penn State

HAZLETON, Pa. — In advance of Penn State Hazleton’s annual Exercise is Medicine (EiM) on Campus Day on April 4, the campus is celebrating being recognized by the American College of Sports Medicine for its dedication to creating a culture of wellness for students. 

Year-round activities like walks, vital sign checks, fitness challenges and wellness fairs helped Penn State Hazleton earn a gold-level designation from the Exercise is Medicine On Campus (EIM-OC) program, a community-impact initiative of the American College of Sports Medicine. Penn State Hazleton is one of just 145 universities and colleges around the world to be honored by EIM-OC and one of 83 to earn gold designation. 

Karen Stylianides, associate teaching professor of kinesiology and chairperson of the campus EiM committee, said the group is grateful for being recognized for its hard work. 

"Attaining the gold-level recognition with Exercise is Medicine on Campus is not just an honor, it’s a testament to our unwavering dedication to the pursuit of health and wellness for our campus community over the past six years,” Stylianides said. “This collaborative effort from our committee started with just a walk around campus and morphed into the promotion of monitoring our vital signs, participating in physical activity and a few friendly exercise challenges. I could not be more elated by receiving this recognition.” 

EIM-OC calls upon universities and colleges to promote physical activity as a vital sign of health and encourages faculty, staff and students to work together to improve the health and well-being of the campus community. It’s recognition program launched in 2014. 

“We are thrilled to recognize these campuses’ commitment to make movement a part of daily campus culture and give students the tools to cultivate physical activity habits that will benefit them throughout their lives,” said interim CEO Katie Feltman, CAE. “These campus programs are nurturing future leaders who will advance a key tenet of Exercise is Medicine: making physical activity assessment and promotion a standard in health care.” 

Penn State Hazleton’s EiM committee holds events throughout the year, highlighted by its Exercise is Medicine on Campus Day on Thursday, April 4. The day-long event will feature a vital sign check performed by a variety of student volunteers, including those from the campus’ practical nursing program, a walk around campus led by Chancellor and Chief Academic Officer Elizabeth J. Wright and calisthenics challenges.  

Students, faculty and staff can have their vital signs checked between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. in the upper level of the Butler Teaching and Learning Resource Center. The Butler Building will also host a day-long fitness challenge where participants will be entered into an Amazon gift card drawing. The walk begins at 10 a.m. outside Pasco L. Schiavo Hall. 

All gold, silver and bronze universities and colleges will be officially recognized on May 29 at the Exercise is Medicine recognition ceremony at the American College of Sports Medicine’s Annual Meeting in Boston.