The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

January 5, 2011

Wellness center debuts

UPJ opens 40,000-square-foot, $9.7 million facility

Kelly Urban
kurban@tribdem.com

— Students at Pitt-Johnstown now have a top-notch facility where they can work on their fitness and improve their overall well-being.

The 40,000-square-foot, $9.7 million Wellness Center had its official ribbon-cutting dedication ceremony Wednesday. University officials, students and community members were on hand to tour the facility.

“Our new Wellness Center will provide our students with much needed fitness and recreational space, and it will help to advance our efforts to create a healthier campus and promote a keener awareness of the interconnection between mind, body and spirt,” said UPJ President Jem Spectar.

Ground was broken for the center in November 2009, and it is linked to UPJ’s Sports Center and the adjoining Zamias Aquatic Center.

The center boasts a fully equipped cardiovascular area that features treadmills, ellipticals, upright and recumbent bikes and stairclimbers. There are two multipurpose courts for basketball and volleyball, and more than two dozen pieces of strength-training equipment.

It has a three-lane running track and a 1,000-square-foot professional dance studio.

A highlight of the center is the 30-foot climbing wall that can accommodate up to six climbers simultaneously.

The Wellness Center is part of the Healthy Campus Initiative, which was designed to address health and wellness issues using a multidimensional, comprehensive and holistic approach.

“The center is a place for students to get away from the stress of everyday life, regroup and get back in touch with themselves,” Spectar said.

Jena Pentz, a sophomore from Johnstown, said the center is a great addition to the campus and has something for everyone.

“It’s bigger than the old gym and more people can use this facility, so I’m excited for this opening,” she said.

Pentz is employed by the center and works at the climbing wall as a supervisor.

She added that the climbing wall has different levels and can be modified depending on skill level.

“It can be really challenging,” Pentz said.

For more information on the center, visit www.pitt-johnstown.pitt.edu/ WellnessCenter.