Exercise Science Student Organization Demonstrates Collaboration in Remote Settings

During this academic year, the Exercise Science Club at the University of Pittsburgh School of Education continually found ways to keep its student members engaged through social activities and career/networking events that adhered to public health guidelines.

The student organization is open to all students at Pitt with an interest in the exercise sciences. Many of its members are students from the Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science program in the Pitt School of Education. That program is part of the larger portfolio of health and physical activity programs within the school that includes e master’s and doctoral programs in the areas of health and wellness management, clinical exercise physiology, and health and physical activity.

“The exercise science organization has been a great way to keep in contact with students and remain positive and excited about my field during the COVID-19 pandemic,” says George Ruddy, the club’s president. Ruddy is earning his degree in exercise science from the Pitt School of Education and is expected to graduate in May 2021.

While the fall 2020 term presented many challenges, the Exercise Science Club still hosted a Virtual Career panel in October for students in the health sciences fields.

“I wanted to bring together students to do something good because it’s been kind of a rough semester,” says Ruddy, “I also wanted to do something that benefited students, so I thought a virtual career panel would be awesome.”

Ruddy spread the word to students and other Pitt organizations, including the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences (SHRS), American Chemical Society (ACS), and the Coalition of Pre-Health Students (CPHS).

“Now that everything has been online, I haven’t been on campus much this year,” says Ruddy. “It was nice to take a break from studying and interact with people in my field.”

Despite Pitt’s students being remote, the Exercise Science organization has found ways to stay connected.Holding virtual events has helped students engage in their field and with others.

“The virtual event was great. A lot of our students were interested in hearing from physician’s assistants this year as many are interested in going into this line of work,” says Ruddy. “We have many people preparing for schools in physical therapy, occupational therapy , and physician assistants, as well as applying to the School of Education graduate programs and many others.”

The Exercise Science Club holds several events throughout the year. The events give members firsthand experience with things happening in the field and allow students to make connections.

“Each year, we send members to the American College of Sports Medicine – Mid-Atlantic Chapter (ACSM-MARC) conference,” says Ruddy. “Usually, we hold annual BBQ nights for members. As fundraisers, we do smoothie sales and cookie days, clothing sales, and a career panel. Typically, we also volunteer at the Sarah Heinz House and host a formal in the Fall. However, with our current situation those opportunities are unavailable.”

The Exercise Science club is accepting new members. To learn more or get involved, please contact upitteso@gmail.com or George Ruddy at gwr6@pitt.edu.

Learn more:

  • Learn about the Pitt School of Education’s Exercise Science programs
  • Contact upittedo@gmail.com
  • Check out the Exercise Science Organization’s Instagramtheir instagram at @upitteso