Three students from Mercy’s School of Health and Natural Sciences brought home the top prize after competing with teams from seven area colleges in a test of their knowledge of exercise science. The Student Bowl competition was part of the annual meeting of the Greater New York chapter of the American College of Sports Medicine (GNYACSM), held in New York City. As winners of the competition, the Mercy students are advancing to the finals to be held in Denver, Colorado.
“We’re excited and proud of our students and their achievement,” said Astrid Mel, Ph.D., assistant professor and exercise science program director. “Mercy teams have competed at the regional level in prior years, and this is the second time Mercy will be represented at nationals.”
The annual ACSM Student Bowl pits undergraduate exercise science majors against one another, vying for a chance to compete at the ACSM National Meeting. When the Mercy team travels to Denver, , they will face off against 11 teams from ACSM chapters across the country for the final prize.
The students—Gabriel Gazio ’23, Ivan Egas ’23 and Jeffrey Discua ’23 — prepared by reviewing course material, practice exam questions and other resources. “As seniors, they’ll be sitting for their certification, so the knowledge they need to compete has been our primary focus,” said Mel.
Aside from the thrill of winning, the conference included opportunities to attend exercise science workshops and education sessions, as well as networking opportunities with practicing professionals. “At this type of professional conference, students can learn about careers, techniques and best practices,” said Mel. “Students who get involved at this level are well prepared to step into successful careers after graduation.”
Mercy’s reputation has been growing as a leader in educating exercise professionals, thanks to repeated wins at the regional conference and now the national ACSM meeting. “Mercy is not just a strong contender in the competition but is also becoming known for programs that serve students well.”
Members of Mercy community will be cheering on the winning team when they travel to Denver for their next challenge. “The students all worked so hard, and their reward is to have more doors opening to them,” said Mel. “I’m glad they took a chance on this great opportunity. They should be very proud of themselves.”