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Ribbon Cutting is Friday for new Blue Devil Fitness Center
Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Dunkirk native
hired as director

By Rebekah Bretl, '13

Jason Bishoff, a 2008 sports management graduate of SUNY Fredonia, has been named director of the new Fitness Center.

His responsibilities include managing all operational aspects of a new 9,000 square foot fitness center as well as planning, and developing related fitness programs, and providing full time guidance, specific training programs, and advice to fitness center clients – among the many other day-to-day operations of the facility.

Bishoff was previously the Recreational Fitness Director for the city of Tallmadge, Ohio. There, he managed a facility of over 5,000 members and monitored and inspected 100 pieces of cardio and strength training equipment. He managed a $200,000 budget, and oversaw trainees and staff for fitness classes and maintenance of the facility.

Also at the Ohio Recreation Department, Bishoff was the Recreation Supervisor from February 2011 until June 2012, before assuming the Director position. He coordinated and prepared recreational programs, assisted in the general maintenance of city parks and trained and evaluated weekly working staff members.

After graduating from SUNY Fredonia, he earned his master's degree in exercise/leisure and sport at Kent State University in 2011.

He is a native of Dunkirk, and a 2003 graduate of Dunkirk High School. From 2003 through 2009, he worked as the assistant recreational director for the City of Dunkirk, which began his first-hand experience in recreational oversight.

Fitness Center SUNY Fredonia Jason Bishoff
Jason Bishoff, director of the new Fitness Center at SUNY Fredonia

Student response to Fredonia State University’s state-of-the-art Blue Devil Fitness Center has been overwhelming since it was opened earlier this month, university officials said.

Vice President for Student Affairs David Herman said over 1,000 students have been using the center daily since it opened Feb. 4. That’s approximately 600 to 650 more students per day compared to the usage numbers at the previous fitness facility. Jason Bishoff has been named director of the facility.

The ribbon cutting for the facility will take place in the Fitness Center on Feb. 22 at 11 a.m., with refreshments and wellness displays. The will also be a prize drawing for faculty/staff for a fitness center semester membership. All are welcome.

"Fredonia students,” Dr. Herman said, “have been asking for this type of facility since 2002, and it is wonderful to finally have it completed. The student response has far exceeded our expectations, and it will serve to enhance our outstanding campus athletic and recreational programs."  

The Fitness Center was funded by university construction funds and student fees approved by the Student Association in 2011. Input from students was sought during the design phase. Varsity student-athletes and student leaders from the Student Association took part in the planning stages alongside JCJ Architecture, Facilities Planning, and Department of Athletics and Recreation staff members.

The finished product is a 9,000 square foot facility in the space which once housed the Dods Hall swimming pool. The new Fitness Center consists of a two-sided rock climbing wall with auto-belay and 107 pieces of new equipment -- 18 treadmills, 10 cross trainers, 25 elliptical machines, five adaptive motion trainers, four recumbent bikes, four upright bikes, one upper body ergometer, 25 selecterized weight machines, one Smith machine, eight adjustable benches, three abdominal benches, three heavy duty power racks with platforms, plus over 6,500 pounds of free weights. There are also 10 medicine balls, 10 exercise balls, 30 resistance bands, and 20 work-out mats.

To learn more, go to the website.

“Our new Fitness Center,” Fredonia State Student Association President Erin Dorozynski said, “has gone beyond the expectations and it has been wonderful to see all of the students benefiting from the project. Dr. Herman often came to our General Assembly meetings to give updates and take input. All involved in the planning and construction of the facilities did a great job assessing the needs and wants of the students...On behalf of the students, thank you to everyone involved for making this possibility into a reality, and for keeping us in mind every step of the way.

University officials are confident the long-awaited addition will enhance campus life and help with recruitment across all student populations. 

"The design and equipment selection,” Assistant Director of Athletics Megan Valentine said, “were tailored to fit the needs and desires of all Fredonia State students ranging from the occasional user to club and varsity sport student-athletes. Furthermore, with research linking physical activity to increased academic performance, the center can only help us in achieving this desirable end. I'm thrilled that we now have the opportunity to offer this enhanced experience for our students."

Fredonia State University Director of Athletics Greg Prechtl expressed his pleasure with the final design and functionality of the new Blue Devil Fitness Center, which will operate under the direction of Jason Bishoff. In his most recent position, Mr. Bishoff served as fitness director for the City of Tallmadge (Ohio) Recreation Department, a 105,000-square foot facility with over 5,000 members. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Sports Management and Exercise Science from Fredonia State, and a Master of Arts degree in Exercise, Leisure and Sport from Kent State University.

“In addition to exceptional credentials and experience,” Mr. Prechtl said, “Jason has a management style that will fit very nicely on this campus. I expect he will provide the kind of outstanding leadership that our students have come to expect and deserve." 

Mr. Bishoff said he expects the Blue Devil Fitness Center to “serve as a hub for healthy socializing and campus fun.”

“From my perspective,” he said, “this facility is truly the ‘missing piece' on an extremely well-planned campus. I am thrilled to see the energy and excitement that the new fitness center has brought to the student body. The overwhelming response thus far is extremely gratifying." 

The ribbon cutting for the facility will take place in the Fitness Center on Feb. 22 at 11 a.m.

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