Collaborative Effort on Article Earns Prestigious Award

Published: April 03, 2020 | Author: Savannah Byers | Read Time: 2 minutes

Erica Bennion, MSSCP graduateWhat started out as a graduate thesis turned into a full-blown collaborative, award-winning article about stress reduction modalities for university students. The article, “A comparison of four stress reduction modalities on measures of stress among university students,” was awarded Outstanding Paper in the 2019 Emerald Literati Awards. Back in 2013, Professor Michael Stathis and former Southern Utah University Provost Brad Cook earned the same award.

SUU’s Master of Science in Sports Conditioning & Performance (MSSCP) graduate Erica Bennion worked with Dr. Mark DeBeliso, professor of Kinesiology and Outdoor Recreation, and Weber State University’s Dr. Michael N. Olpin, director of the WSU Stress Relief Center and professor of health promotion.

The idea for the article was initially formulated during Bennion’s thesis writing course (PE 6933- Thesis: Sports Conditioning and Performance) in which Dr. DeBeliso was her advisor. Once the pair decided to turn the thesis into a journal article, they invited Dr. Olpin, Bennion’s father, to work with them.

“The article was basically a high-powered version of her thesis,” said Dr. DeBeliso. “This award is truly an honor, but more than anything else we’re proud of Erica for this major accomplishment.”

For their research, they explored the effects of four different stress reduction modalities in WSU’s Stress Relief Center on levels of physiological and perceived stress reduction among university students. They concluded that all four modalities were equally effective with respect to reducing heart rate and perceived stress (noting that one modality was sitting and meditating). So, if you don’t have access to a Stress Relief Center, you can start to manage your stress by finding a quiet environment and taking time to meditate and relax.

“There are a number of theses that have led to peer-reviewed publications and presentations disseminated across a number of disciplines,” Dr. DeBeliso said. “Likewise, the success of the MSSCP program is dependent on the dedication of the faculty and staff who are committed to the success of the students.”

SUU’s Master of Science in Sports Conditioning & Performance has continually earned recognition as one of the best online master programs in sports conditioning & performance. 

Tags: Sports Conditioning College of Education and Human Development

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