A Familiar Face on MainStreet
Graduating senior Jackie Clifford is one of the 350 UC students who work at the state-of-the-art Campus Recreation Center.
Date: 5/15/2006Jackie Clifford has put her share of sweat into UC’s Campus Recreation Center, and it wasn’t just on a treadmill or an elliptical. Clifford works as a member services intern and a personal trainer at the new facility, which completes the largest and most ambitious capital project in the university’s 187-year history, the MainStreet corridor through the heart of campus.
By: Dawn Fuller
Phone: (513) 556-1823
Photos By: Dottie Stover
The 23-year-old Cleveland native will graduate in June with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. It’s likely her academic background was very helpful as from the ground up Jackie developed the member services handbook, designed a training program for new staff and worked on the Web site for the new facility. She supervises dozens of students who work in the center’s member services area.
“Many excellent students have worked with the Campus Recreation program over the years but Jackie is among the best we have ever had,” says Kim Schmidt, director of the Campus Recreation Center. “She really is an exceptional individual, the total package in my opinion. She’s intelligent, enthusiastic and dedicated. Jackie is an excellent ambassador for the Campus Recreation Center.”
The second oldest in a family that includes three brothers and two sisters, Jackie says she just grew up liking athletics. Softball and baseball were the family favorites, she says.
“I was always involved in sports in high school,” she says. “I played basketball, soccer and softball. I was always sports-minded and that’s why I got involved with intramurals at UC.”
She has worked for campus recreation for four years, holding various jobs from official for football, basketball and softball, to working in marketing, membership and scheduling student employees.
As a personal trainer, she warns Campus Recreation Center newcomers hoping to get in shape fast that there’s really no way to “spot train. A lot of people want to know how to lose their stomach really fast and there’s no way to just spot train. If you want to lose weight, you have to exercise and you have to change the way you eat. My brother stopped drinking pop and he lost about 25 pounds!”
Clifford adds that sometimes classes are a better way to go for people starting out their exercise routine, because there’s a support system there. “The first time I took a step aerobics class, it was hilarious. I’m not much of a dancer, so it was very difficult at first, but everyone was laughing and having a good time, and I liked that.”
She also feels her employment with campus recreation has “opened many doors. I know so many people on campus and people know me, because I’ve been with Rec so long. So I just feel like I’m much more involved at UC outside the classroom by working at the Rec Center.”
After graduation, Clifford’s entering dental school at the University of Pennsylvania, and believes her psychology background from UC will give her an edge in the field. “People hate going to the dentist. But I think the communication skills I learned in psychology will help me as I work with the patients. Most dental students graduated in biology, so I think I’m a unique candidate for dental school.”