College takes part in Panther Prowl as part of campus health initiative

The start of the Kids' Dash at the Panther Prowl 5K start line.

Every second Saturday in October for the last fourteen years, UWM faculty, staff and students have come together for a fun run/walk in the neighborhood to raise money for UWM student scholarships. This year, almost 1,700 runners, walkers, strollers and canines helped to add to the $320,000 raised to date.

Among the teams participating in the Panther Prowl were the, “UWM Partners for Health Pacemakers,” with over sixty faculty, staff and students from health sciences, nursing and public health, who helped to bring substantial financial support for scholarships.

The Prowl is also one of the more visible events for the Exercise is Medicine® on Campus (EIM-OC) student interest group, led by a leadership team made up of UWM students, faculty and staff.

What is Exercise is Medicine® on Campus?

Exercise is Medicine® on Campus (EIM-OC) is an American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) initiative that promotes physical activity and exercise on college campuses by fostering collaborative multidisciplinary relationships and leadership between exercise, health and other disciplines.

At UWM, EIM-OC is providing CHS students in kinesiology with opportunities to get high- quality, hands-on experience as they assume leadership roles in various exercise-related events and initiatives.

As professor and undergraduate program director in the Department of Kinesiology, Exercise Science & Health Promotion (ESHP) Unit, Christy Greenleaf, PhD, serves as one of the advisors for the EIM-OC program at UWM.

“This designation has given our students a unique opportunity to partner with multiple campus resources, including Norris Health Center and University Recreation, as well as the ACSM, the premier organization in our field. From an educational standpoint, this is a wonderful opportunity,” Greenleaf said.

One of the primary goals of the program is to see all campus and community members discover, share and adopt principles that help people embrace behaviors that support health, specifically physical activity.

Meet the EIM-OC Leadership Team

Coordinating the effort on campus is an Exercise is Medicine® on Campus Leadership Team made up of faculty, campus health fitness and health care professionals, as well as students in the college’s Kinesiology program and the Kinesiology Undergraduate Student Organization (KUSO).

Nicole Hohn
BS Kinesiology student

Peyton Hughes
BS Kinesiology student

Mitchel Olson
BS Kinesiology student

Christy Greenleaf, PhD
Professor, Department of Kinesiology, Exercise Science & Health Promotion (ESHP) Unit

Ann Swartz, PhD, ACSM Fellow
Professor and Chair, Department of Kinesiology, Exercise Science & Health Promotion (ESHP) Unit

Dr. Julia Bonner
Director, UWM Norris Health Center

Brian Stahlkopf, MS
Senior Student Services Coordinator, Norris Health Center

Sarah Luelloff, MS, ACE, AFAA
Fitness Program Director, UWM University Recreation (UREC)

Along with Greenleaf, Ann Swartz, PhD, ACSM Fellow, professor and chair, Department of Kinesiology, ESHP Unit, serves as an advisor to the team. Swartz said, “It’s wonderful that the whole department, from faculty to students, came together to support this important mission.  We are doing everything we can to encourage exercise and movement.”

On the Prowl to better health

Leadership team members initiate and support a wide variety of activities on campus to tie in with the Exercise is Medicine® on Campus initiative, the Panther Prowl being one of them.

Athletic trainers and students from the Kinesiology, Integrative Health Care and Performance (IHCP) unit, also provided first aid, injury prevention education and pre- and post-race stretching.

“One of the most important jobs of an athletic trainer is to help people learn how to safely exercise, stay hydrated and prevent injuries,” said Associate Professor Jennifer Earl-Boehm, PhD, ATC, FNATA, and director of the Master of Science in Athletic Training program.

This November a handful of kinesiology students will attend the Midwest Chapter of the American College of Sports Medicine (MWACSM) Conference in Grand Rapids, Mich. There they will present a full report of the activities on the UWM campus. They also will talk to others to about the most interesting programs and initiatives, and bring home ideas to further expand the program.