Director of Fitness Donna Morosky is making huge strides in improving the fitness environment at Carnegie Mellon. Along with developing the exercise programs and workout classes, Morosky teaches aerobic fitness and spinning classes this semester. With plans for even more improvements to exercise facilities and classes, Morosky answered some of our questions about the future of fitness on campus.

The Tartan: What made you decide to come to work at Carnegie Mellon?
Morosky: When the opportunity to interview for the swimming coach position was made known to me, I was not even looking for another job. I think the underlying factor in my decision was the challenge to improve the team and to be competitive in Division III.

T: What is a typical day in the life of Donna?
M: Each day brings on its own challenges from teaching class, which I love, attending meetings, developing and implementing programs in the area of wellness, reviewing group exercise instructors in their classes, and maintaining workable fitness equipment. I work closely with Pattye Stragar and Mike Mastroianni almost every day. We’re always looking for ways to improve our programs as demand grows or diminishes in physical education and group exercises.

T: Have you seen changes in athletic awareness on campus?
M: As we all know, Carnegie Mellon is a highly competitive school both academically and athletically. Our teams continue to receive more and more recognition in the UAA and nationally.
Special programs with guest speakers like Charlie Batch, and events such as the cancer awareness events by the basketball teams help a lot. The Senior Olympics held in 2006 on campus certainly helped to increase athletic awareness.
All of the new additions to the staff under the direction of our director, Susan Bassett, and her vision of an academically and athletically elite university [have] improved the awareness of athletics in a very short time.

T: What has the UC done over the past few years to help combat non-athletic behavior?
M: As we move forward to a new facility, one key goal of the athletic department is to grow the quality and quantity of the services we provide. We currently use a replacement system of every three years with the cardio equipment in the UC and in Skibo. This spring we’ll replace the cardio equipment.

T: Do you have any special plans in the works?
M: New this year has been the development of an intern program with the University or Pittsburgh [department of] health and physical activity.
Majors in this department attend here for one semester so that we then have an additional person to implement new programs and help staff with current ones. New for this term are the one-on-one personal training sessions and some group training. We are hoping that this collaboration will continue.

T: What’s your favorite part about being a part of the Carnegie Mellon community?
M: I truly enjoy this campus community, mostly because of the professionalism here, all of the friends I have now over the 30+ years that I’ve been here, and being able to work alongside many highly educated and diverse members both in and out of my department.

T: Any words of wisdom to students on staying active?
M: If I could get just one message out to the student body, it would be to stay active and maintain proper nutrition. Physical activity and nutrition helps not only to balance the stress of academics, but also provides fuel to get the job done, mental clarity, and allows one to sleep and rest when needed.

T: What is your favorite sport to play? To watch?
M: During the winter, although I ski when I get the chance, I spend most of my “sports” time playing platform or paddle tennis and attending yoga classes. In the summer I play tennis, swim, and continue with most of my yoga classes. Sporting events that I watch include football, basketball, and swimming.

T: Does Carnegie Mellon seem like a “healthy” campus in your opinion?
M: The campus community continues to be more and more aware of healthy lifestyles and habits.
It starts from the leadership of [President] Cohon through departments working together such as the athletics, student health, Environmental Health and Safety, and Housing to achieve better understanding of health in general, “green” environments, and fitness awareness.