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CPASS faculty member honored for mentoring students while supporting health and wellness

A faculty member at West Virginia University has received national recognition for her work with students while promoting physical activity and wellness within West Virginia and across the country. 

Eloise Elliott, PhD was chosen as the 2020 Mentor of the Year by the Society of Health and Physical Educators of America. Elliott was to have received the award at the SHAPE America National Convention in Salt Lake City in April. Due to COVID-19, the conference was canceled, however, SHAPE has released a video honoring the award recipients. 

“I am grateful to be selected by SHAPE America to receive this award, but even more honored to be nominated by my students and colleagues. The greatest pleasure of my professional career is to have the opportunity to work with passionate students and professionals who dedicate their careers to promoting physical activity and improving the health of children and adults across the country,” said Elliott, Ware Distinguished Professor, College of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences.

The Mentor of the Year Award recognizes an outstanding role model who encourages student involvement in professional opportunities and provides exemplary academic and professional preparation advisement. One of Elliott’s doctoral student graduates, Luciana Braga, was selected to receive the Young Professional Award from SHAPE America. 

Elliott was nominated by peers and former and current doctoral students, including past and present doctoral students: Dr. Adam Keath (2017, Doctoral Chair), Dr. Brooke Towner (2018, Doctoral Chair), Dr. Hannah Kipfer, (2018, Doctoral Chair), Dr. Annie Machamer (2019, Doctoral Committee Member), and Cory Breithoff-Moskovich (2019, Doctoral Committee Member).

The group of former and current doctoral students praised Elliott for her commitment to the advancement of the field and mission of getting children moving.

“Dr. Elliott engages her students in scholarly activity that works to accomplish that mission in our distinctive areas. While we are all uniquely different in our fields, you can see her fingerprint in all our work as we strive to tie these specialties back to the primary goal of promoting and sustaining physical activity among our youth,” as noted in the group’s recommendation.

Elliott has mentored students, school teachers and colleagues across a long and productive career working in K-12 schools and higher education settings. She has been generous in her mentorship of physical educators, classroom teachers, undergraduate/graduate students and colleagues, explains  Sean Bulger, EdD, associate dean, Graduate and Online Education.

“Her record of research, teaching and service accurately reflects her contributions as a model scholar-practitioner. Her ability to balance and align her professional efforts across these three mission-critical domains truly sets her apart, along with her career-long focus on helping families and children in Appalachian communities,” said Bulger. 

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