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Partnership with Franklin County Family YMCA Offers New Experiential Learning Opportunities

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Beginning next month, Ferrum College’s fitness center and the Franklin County Family YMCA will update their partnership, which has been ongoing since 2012, to allow the College to independently operate its workout facility on campus. The arrangement will allow the College to expand the experiential learning opportunities it offers its students.

“Moving our Health and Human Performance (HHP) classrooms into the fitness center will provide a framework for experiential learning,” said Karen Carpenter, assistant professor and program coordinator of the HHP program at Ferrum College. Carpenter will also serve as the general manager of the fitness center.

“Beginning this fall, we will add three national certification opportunities in strength and conditioning, personal training, and group fitness,” continued Carpenter. “Group fitness classes, student personal training, nutritional analysis, sport specific strength programs, movement training, and overall business operations are all academic and experiential opportunities for our HHP students.”

Carpenter noted that the community will also benefit by gaining access to short-term programs and long-term credentialed professionals.

Previously, Franklin County Family YMCA members used the College’s fitness center, which operated as the Ferrum YMCA. This perk will continue through the upcoming year for the approximately 100 members of the Ferrum YMCA branch.

Ferrum College employees will continue to be able to use the fitness center for free, and the Franklin County Family YMCA will also offer a discounted membership to the College’s employees, to be used at the facility in Rocky Mount.

“The Y is excited to continue our collaboration with Ferrum College to improve the lives of residents,” said Kevin McAlexander, chief executive officer for the Franklin County Family YMCA in Rocky Mount. “The Y is a leader in not only health and wellness but youth development and social responsibility which makes us a natural partner for the College.”

Ferrum College is using this summer to give the fitness center a facelift by refreshing the facility and updating the equipment. College officials anticipate opening the fitness center around mid-August when students begin returning to campus. Current members of the Ferrum College YMCA will receive further communication as more concrete plans are made.

“It is with excitement we take on the opportunity to create a living lab for the HHP program,” said Carpenter. “Our vision is bold and we are thankful for the trust of our administration as we transition the Ferrum fitness center and allow it to evolve into a vibrant hub of health and community.”

Learn more about Ferrum College’s Health and Human Performance program here.

Learn more about the Franklin County Family YMCA here.