By Joe DiBari
The transformation is total—from a space that years ago served beer, to a place today where Fordham University students can work on their six-pack abs.
The state-of-the-art $1.9 million recreation facility was a longtime vision of Joseph M. McShane, S.J., president of the University.
“We have limped along for far too long without ideal workout facilities,” said Father McShane. “When the space in the Ramskeller became available we decided to move forward with this project and give the students a facility where they have plenty of space, a space that is triple the size of the facility in the Lombardi Center.”
After a short welcome from Father McShane, Patrick Ryan, S.J., the Laurence J. McGinley Chair of Religion and Society, said a prayer and then blessed the new facility.
Father McShane, Director of Athletics David Roach, Vice President of Facilities Marc Valera, and Vice President of Student Affairs Jeffrey Gray then officially opened the doors, allowing the students to enter their new workout facility.
The room consists of 3,800 square feet of cardio space (Stairmasters, elliptical machines, stationary bikes) with a stretching/cool down area and a 1,100 square foot dance/group fitness studio. The facility also houses a dedicated spin cycle room, a separate free weights room, and storage cubbies.
The only thing the facility still needs is a name. Father McShane announced at the opening that there will be a naming contest for Fordham students.
Sarah Longley Bickford has been named the center’s coordinator of fitness and recreation.
Michael Roberts, Fordham’s assistant director of athletics for club sports and recreation, will oversee the fitness center and its staff.
“Among all the amenities included in the McGinley Fitness Center, I am most enthusiastic about a broadened group fitness program and sound nutritional support,” said Roberts. “The opportunity to entice faculty, staff, and alumni into participating in fitness and wellness has literally jumped off the scale.”
The facility is partnering with Sodexo and the on-campus registered dietician to provide a comprehensive approach to wellness. Students and athletes using the fitness center will be able to work with Jeanne Molloy, a registered dietitian who will serve as a nutritional consultant for the center.
For information about the McGinley Fitness Center, contact Sarah Longley Bickford at (718) 817-3815 or via email: [email protected].