Sittig and Suchomel

Two kinesiology alumni are building on what they learned at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh in careers at universities outside Wisconsin.

Rebekah Sittig ’13, of Jonesboro, Arkansas, is the assistant director of strength and conditioning at Arkansas State, and Timothy Suchomel is an assistant professor of exercise science at East Stroudsburg University in Pennsylvania.

As assistant director, Sittig creates and implements the sport performance programs for women’s basketball, volleyball and golf. She helps with football and other sports if needed.

She also is in charge of their internship program, curriculum and staff meeting and development activities.

“I really enjoy these responsibilities, as they push me to improve my own knowledge, skills and philosophies in the field of strength and conditioning,” Sittig said.

Sittig said the UWO kinesiology department played a big part in deciding her career path.

“The curriculum and research revealed to me the many different avenues I could dive into with my degree,” Sittig said. “I was exposed to everything from athletic training, to therapeutic specialties, to personal training. As the different possibilities were opened to me, I was able to more clearly decide what path I wanted to take.”

Suchomel ’10, of East Stroudsburg, has completed his first year teaching strength and conditioning and kinesiology classes, exercise physiology and gross anatomy labs and workshops for certified personal trainers and strength and conditioning specialist certifications.

He also advised 30 students and was on four graduate students’ thesis committees.

Suchomel said he attributes a lot of what he has achieved to UWO’s kinesiology department.

“The faculty helped push me academically and challenged me to take on certain opportunities that I may not have pursued otherwise,” Suchomel said.

His first experience with strength and conditioning research was under Dan Schmidt, UWO exercise and fitness program director and department co chair,

“As an independent study project, Schmidt guided me in the research process as we examined the effect of regular strength training and interval runs on the performance of ROTC cadets during their fitness evaluation,” Suchomel said.

Suchomel’s advice to current UWO kinesiology students is to not set limits on what they want to get out of their career.

“If an opportunity presents itself, take it,” Suchomel said. “Use the resources around you and pursue all avenues to get to where you want to be.”

Sittig said students should get as much practical experience in their related field as possible.

“Even if it’s not exactly what you may see yourself doing in the future, there are many things to learn that will carry over and apply in your desired field,” Sittig said. “Take your future into your hands and do something with it.”

Written by UWO alumni STEP writer Jenny Goldade.