Fitness and Your GPA

By Deborah Williams

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Attention college students:  If you want an edge for improving your overall GPA, join a gym!  An article by Nina Friend on the Huffington Post website reports a recent study led by Michigan State University kinesiology and epidemiology professor, James Pivarnik, showed that among the 4,843 freshmen and sophomores who had memberships to MSU’s recreational sports and fitness centers were likely to have higher GPAs than those who did not.  Pivarnik reports that those with gym membership had cumulative GPAs that were 0.13 points higher than those who were not members.  That seemingly small advantage might “mean the difference to those students on the cusp of getting into graduate school or even advancing to the next academic year.”  Not only that, he noted that those students with gym membership “…had more credits completed by the end of their freshman year and stayed in school longer…”

The results of this study suggest the need for colleges to become more of “a healthy campus” in ways that some work environments seek to be healthier.  Pivarnik suggests various factors for healthy campuses in addition to gym and recreational facilities:  smoking, pollution, mental health, and feeling good about one’s self as a student.  He believes that colleges might have higher retention rates if they provide “adequate recreational and fitness facilities for students.”

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Return to One Room Schoolhouses

By Deborah Williams

NPR writer Anya Kamenetz’s recent blog post reveals that the one-room schoolhouse, once the standard of American education, has suddenly become new in some locations.  The current version, now known as the “micro-school,” “is being touted as an important model for creating innovative, personalized learning experiences.  Such an environment, the thinking goes, can ease the creation of close relationships among teachers and students.  And it can provide an easy venue for experimentation.”

“Micro-schools” are organized into various structures.