James Madison University

Student Involvement in the Morrison-Bruce Center

The Morrison-Bruce Center, under the directorship of Drs. Elizabeth Edwards and Sarah Carson, offers outreach programming and research opportunities in physical activity for girls and women each semester.

If you’d like to get involved with the Morrison-Bruce Center, please contact us a morrisonbrucecenter@jmu.eduVisit our website for more information about all of the programs we offer and about getting involved.

Eva Hannesdottir, Lindsey Hogan and Meghan Pietraccini were selected by their peers to be featured for this story. Their stories about becoming involved in the MBC and future plans are below.

PHOTO: Eva Hannesdottir, Lindsey Hogan and Meghan Pietraccini

Eva’s Story

How did you become interested in this internship?
I became interested in doing my internship at the Morrison Bruce Center because I knew other students that had done it and spoke highly of it. When I was enrolled in KIN 420, I attended a Girls Golf session and it gave me an idea of what it would entail. Also, I’ve always loved working with kids and I thought this would be a great site to complete my internship.

What were your internship responsibilities? What was the most rewarding experience?
My responsibilities varied and that’s what I loved about it. I was a co-leader on the Girls Golf committee and a member on three other committees; Healthy Kids, Coloblast 5k and Movin’ and Groovin’ Day. I found many of the small things rewarding, like when the children at Healthy Kids would interact with each other and have fun. However, it was also very cool to be a part of putting together the single day events such as Colorblast and Movin’N’Groovin. So much time and work went into planning those days so it was very rewarding to see all the hard work pay off.

What do you plan to do after graduating in May?
I have not made any plans yet. I’m looking forward to take a year off and explore my options but I plan on going back to school eventually. I see myself working within the health and fitness field and possibly with the younger population.

Lindsey’s Story

PHOTO: Lindsay Hogan

How did you become interested in this internship?
I first became interested in the Morrison-Bruce Center when I was in Kin 420. We had to do a service learning project with the MBC as part of our grade. I was assigned to Girl’s Golf for 1 day and absolutely loved it. I then talked to Dr. Edwards about a potential internship at the Center and she invited me to come to a Healthy Kids to learn more. I had such a great time playing games with the children and helping them learn more about physical activity and nutrition. After that visit I knew for sure that I wanted to complete my internship at the Morrison-Bruce Center.

What were your internship responsibilities? What was the most rewarding experience?
I am a co-leader for Movin’ & Groovin’/Teen Health Fair and Marketing and Development. I also am a committee member for Girl’s Golf and Lets CHAT (Create Healthy Activities Together). As a co-leader of Movin’ & Groovin’/Teen Health Fair, I was in charge of all the logistics and making sure the day ran smoothly. The whole committee worked together with planning the different stations for the day. Each station covered different aspects of fitness and nutrition. I was in charge of sending out bulk emails, overseeing the volunteers and participants, ordering the participants’ and volunteers’ t-shirts, taking care of any problems that may have arose throughout the day, and just making sure everyone had a fun and enjoyable day. 

Marketing and Development consists of getting the MBC name out into the community. We are in charge of advertising with flyers, brochures, and newsletters. This semester we made two newsletters that covered our different programs and interviews. We also made two bulletin boards each month. We had various themes for each month. A few examples were: healthy Irish recipes for St. Patrick’s Day, summer adventures in Harrisonburg, who are we (MBC style), and heart pumping date ideas for Valentine’s Day.

Girl’s Golf is a program where we teach 7-17 year old girls the basics about golf and nutrition. We have a LPGA that also helps teach the girls about full swing, SNAG, and putting. This year we have had a theme every session such as a luau, pajama day, and dress as your favorite fruit/vegetable. The girls really enjoyed showing their creativity with the different themes. The MBC staff participated in the different themes too!

Being on the Lets CHAT committee involves helping critique the lesson plans to better the participants’ experience and help them get more out of the program. We give feedback on the weekly lesson plans. We also help teach the physical fitness portion of the weekly lesson by showing and assisting the participants with the different exercises for that lesson.

The most rewarding experience so far was the actual day of Movin’ & Groovin. It was a lot of hard work that the committee and I did leading up to the event, but as soon as I saw all of the girls running around and laughing it was all worth it. It was such a joy to see them enjoying everything you worked so hard on. After seeing that, all of the hard work and long hours were 100% worth it.

What do you plan to do after graduating in May?
After I graduate JMU I am going to take a year off and hopefully find a job as a physical therapy technician for that year. Then I want to go into the physical therapy assistant program. I am really interested in sports therapy and I hope to further my experience and education in that area.

Meghan’s Story

PHOTO: Meghan Pietraccini

How did you become interested in this internship?
I first became interested in this opportunity during the spring of 2012, when I helped out with the Girls Golf program as part of the KIN 420 class.  I did my practicum in the fall of 2012 in the Human Performance Lab with Dr. Todd, which I really enjoyed.  However, I wanted a different kind of experience for my internship.  I had friends who did practicums at the Morrison-Bruce Center, and everyone seemed to have fun and learn a lot.  I really liked that the MBC had a lot of different opportunities to get involved with different populations and also help with research, so I applied last fall.

What were your internship responsibilities? What was the most rewarding experience?
I had several tasks for my internship at the MBC: I was a committee leader for Healthy Kids and Middle School Visits, and I was a committee member for Marketing and CREW.  I also helped out with the ColorBlast 5k and Expo, Movin and Groovin Day, Elementary School Visits, Girls Golf, and Alumni Health and Fitness.

There have been a lot of rewarding experiences thus far, but I would have to say that the Healthy Kids program has been most rewarding because it was 12 weeks long, and I was really able to watch the children learn and progress.  Healthy Kids also showed me that I can make a positive impact on kids’ lives.

What do you plan to do after graduating in May?
My next step is to try and figure out what I want to do with my life.  I have already taken the GRE, and I plan on going to grad school in the fall of 2014.  I am not sure what exactly I’d like to study, so I hope I will figure that out over the next few months.  Also, I would really like to take some time to travel before I begin grad school.  I am looking into living and working in Spain because I can speak Spanish, and I really enjoyed Spain last time I visited.