Being prepared and knowledgeable when an emergency comes your way is important for anyone. Offering CPR and AED trainings at your campus recreation center is a unique way to bring in visitors and to also prepare them if and when an emergency does occur.
At Towson University they offer CPR and AED trainings on the first Sunday of every month. Associate Director of Facility Operations for Campus Recreation Tia Freiburger said an added benefit to having attendees learn what to do in case of emergency is they also are getting to interact with participants outside of the normal gym routine.
“Offering safety certification courses allows Campus Rec an opportunity to interact with our participants in a way in which we don’t normally get to; in a classroom setting,” said Freiberger. “It is an easy way to bring in unique participants, allow opportunities for students to hold leadership positions as instructors and provides scheduling flexibility in getting all Campus Rec student staff certified in house.”
The unique aspect to Towson’s certification program is that they utilize their student staff to help instruct the courses. Rather than contracting out, they allow their students to pull from their experiences to make it more centered around Campus Recreation.
“The students receive their instructor certification in-house and then co-instruct with their peers before being given their own class,” said Freiburger. “Being an instructor gives our student staff valuable leadership skills and increases their understanding of the course material.”
Offering students the chance to teach the CPR and AED certification classes gives Campus Recreation the ability to control the consistency in delivery, scheduling and ensure the student staff are all being educated on the same topics.
“Until 2012, student staff were allowed to get any type of certifications from any organization,” said Freiburger. “By offering it in-house, we were able to get all of our student staff under one certification umbrella. By teaching classes in-house, we can be sure that the material that is covered is consistent from class to class. Also, when discussing scenarios and EAP, our instructors can pull from their experiences with Campus Rec to share with their peers they are certifying.”
Towson University has had positive feedback since incorporating the trainings into their Campus Recreation’s schedule. “Several of our participants have since come back to tell us stories about saving family members from choking, using basic first aid skills on roommates, and simply just being more level headed in emergency situations,” said Freiburger.