Kansas State University


Department of Kinesiology

Category: Summer 2016

From our department head

Craig HarmsOn behalf of our faculty and staff, welcome to the summer 2016 Department of Kinesiology newsletter. Here you will find a vast array of information and news about our graduate and undergraduate academic programs and students, and our faculty, research and alumni.

It has been my pleasure to serve as department head for nearly two years now. As I approach 19 years with the department, I am both amazed and thrilled to see the growth and positive changes that have occurred in the department. We have truly extraordinary faculty committed to providing our more than 700 undergraduates and more 40 graduate students with an excellent education. Research by our faculty seeks to discover new knowledge related to physical activity and health, and translate this knowledge to improve people’s lives. Our faculty and students are creative and industrious as they successfully work together to achieve this goal. Also, since joining the College of Human Ecology three years ago, our department is receiving some unique opportunities for our faculty and students.

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Faculty profiles: Brad Behnke and Steven Copp

Brad BehnkeBrad Behnke is an associate professor in the Department of Kinesiology and a member of the Johnson Cancer Research Center at K-State. He earned his doctorate in physiology from K-State’s College of Veterinary Medicine and became a postdoctoral fellow in cardiovascular physiology at Texas A&M University and at the West Virginia University School of Medicine. In 2008, Behnke joined the faculty at the University of Florida and began studying integrative cancer physiology, with a focus on systemic manipulation of the tumor microenvironment to enhance treatment outcomes. While at Florida, he was a member of the University of Florida Cancer Center and Hypertension Center.

Behnke came back to K-State in 2014 and has been researching cardiovascular physiology, including the effects of cancer, microgravity, aging and heart failure. He has worked closely with NASA, investigating the effects of spaceflight and radiation on vascular function with subjects on the last several space shuttle missions. In 2016, Behnke and his colleagues will give keynote addresses about exercise and cancer at two major physiological conferences.

He has published more than 80 scientific articles, reviews and book chapters, and his work has appeared in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine and more. Behnke was awarded a four-year American Cancer Society Research Scholar Grant for “Modulation of Tumor Oxygenation to Enhance Radiotherapy.”

Steven CoppSteven Copp, an assistant professor in the Department of Kinesiology, studies how the autonomic nervous system and the cardiovascular system respond to exercise. Specifically, he is interested in understanding how the adjustments of those systems produce increases in blood pressure during exercise and why that increase is exaggerated in many forms of cardiovascular and metabolic disease. An exaggerated blood pressure response to exercise increases an individual’s risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke.

The current projects in the Cardio-Oncology and Autonomic Physiology Laboratory, which Copp co-directs with Brad Behnke, are designed to determine the precise feedback neural control signals from contracting skeletal muscle that are activated during exercise. The long-term goal of Copp’s research is to provide the foundation for treating exaggerated blood pressure responses to exercise.

Copp earned his bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate from K-State. He returned to the university to teach in January 2016. He is looking forward to settling back into the Manhattan community with his wife, Melissa, and their two young children.

Human Ecology names rising young professional award winner

Emily DiederichEmily Diederich is a pulmonary and critical care physician at the University of Kansas Medical Center. She serves as director of simulation for the Zamierowski Institute of Experiential Learning, a training center for health care students and professionals from the University of Kansas Hospital and KU Medical Center. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from K-State in kinesiology, followed by a medical degree from the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania and a fellowship at the KU School of Medicine. She is board certified in internal medicine, with sub-certifications in pulmonary diseases and critical care medicine. Diederich serves as co-chair of the American College of Chest Physicians Difficult Airway Simulation Course.

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Alumni profile: Brett Bartholomew

Brett BartholomewBrett Bartholomew is a strength and conditioning coach at Unbreakable Performance Center in Los Angeles, California. He is also a partner in the company and director of performance, overseeing the programming and coaching for athletes across all sporting domains. Bartholomew has worked with Olympic, professional, amateur, collegiate and high school athletes in more than 23 sports worldwide, including Canadian and Chinese Olympic athletes, world championship rugby teams, members of the U.S. Special Forces, NFL players from all 32 teams, UFC fighters and amateur boxers.

Bartholomew also works extensively with organizations such as the Wounded Warrior Project and industry leaders such as Tesla, Google, Intel and Franklin Square on corporate wellness. Before joining Unbreakable, he served as the lead strength and conditioning coach for the NFL and Combat Sports Programs at EXOS, formerly the Athletes Performance Institute, and led and designed programming for the MLB, MiLB and military programs.

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Student spotlight: Dylan Bassett, Katelyn Gilmore and Joshua Smith

Dylan Bassett (undergraduate)

Dylan BassettDylan Bassett is a senior in kinesiology, exercise physiology, and pre-physical therapy from Salina, Kansas. He plans to attend the physical therapy school at the University of Kansas in Kansas City. His involvement at K-State includes: vice president of the Kinesiology Student Association, director of university projects of the Mortar Board Senior Honor Society, Theta Xi Fraternity, Cadaver Team Practicum, and a volunteer with the Boys and Girls Club. Dylan has earned the 2016 American Kinesiology Association Undergraduate Scholar Award and the Dane Hansen Award. In his spare time, Dylan enjoys boxing and taught himself to juggle.

Katelyn Gilmore (master’s)

Katelyn GilmoreKatelyn Gilmore is in the Master of Public Health program with an emphasis in physical activity. She has bachelor degrees in kinesiology and nutrition from K-State. Currently, Katelyn studies functional training, exercise behaviors, built environment and nutrition in Dr. Heinrich’s lab. From Aurora, Colorado, Katelyn hopes to return to Colorado and teach, research and conduct community outreach. She is currently involved in the American College of Sports Medicine, the Kansas Public Health Association and the National Restaurant Association. Katelyn has been awarded the 2016 American Kinesiology Association Masters Scholar Award and the Green Action Fund award. She is currently learning Spanish, French and Italian and has visited over 25 countries. Katelyn enjoys rowing, in and out of water.

Joshua Smith (doctoral)

Josh SmithJoshua Smith is a kinesiology doctoral candidate from Fishers, Indiana, and he works in Dr. Harms’ lab researching how the cardiopulmonary system limits exercise. He earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Indiana University and a master’s degree in kinesiology from Kansas State University. He has been awarded the 2016 American Kinesiology Association Doctoral Scholar Award, the 2015 Kinesiology Department Outstanding Doctoral Student Award  and the 2014 Joint Commission on Sports Medicine and Science second runner up Graduate Fellow. Josh’s future plans include marrying his fiancée Bethany in October, graduating in May 2017 and either post-doc work or a tenure track position. He enjoys running and Hogan’s Heroes.

Scholarship and award winners

Award winnersThe scholarship winners in the Department of Kinesiology were recognized at a banquet April 14, 2016. The following students were awarded scholarships: Brittany Ziegler, Pauline Compton Scholarship; Alexandra Herrmann, Ito Family Scholarship; Katelyn Bell, Eva Lyman Memorial Scholarship; Mary Donnelly, Barbara Moses Memorial Scholarship; Lindsey Unrein and Madison Epp, Mary Lois Rynders Sykes Scholarship; Kelli Stallbaumer, Darlene J. Meisner Peniston Memorial Scholarship; Evan Kempf, Larry Noble Fitness Promotion Scholarship; Danielle Kastner, T.M. Mickey Evans Outstanding Freshman; Bradyn Nicholson, Kenneth D. Mosely Scholarship; Stephanie Kurti, Outstanding Graduate Doctoral Student; Trenton Colburn, Outstanding Graduate Master’s Student; and Katlyn Smith, Kelsie Carpenter and Vanessa Turpin, department scholars.

Kinesiology in the news

Tom Barstow, professor, received the College of Human Ecology Faculty Research Excellence Award in spring 2016. This award recognizes superior accomplishment in research, scholarly and creative activities, and discovery.

Craig Harms, professor, was elected vice president of the American College of Sports Medicine.

Rob Pettay, instructor, received the Putting Students First Award sponsored by the Division of Student Life at Kansas State University. The award recognizes faculty and staff who go the extra mile in advising, teaching and service to students.

David Poole, professor, received the Myers-Alford Outstanding Teaching Award in spring 2016 from the College of Human Ecology. The award was established to honor a faculty member who demonstrates outstanding ability not only in teaching undergraduate and graduate students, but also in providing valuable information to colleagues, peers and other practitioners in the field.

Stephanie Kurti, doctoral candidate, received the Kansas State University Alumni Association Graduate Award for Outstanding Academics.

Joshua Smith, doctoral candidate, received the Kansas State University Golden Key Honor Society GTA of the Year award. He also received a $5,000 doctoral research award from the American College of Sports Medicine.

Mentoring program

Kinesiology labThe College of Human Ecology is seeking mentors for the Professional Mentoring Program. Juniors, seniors and graduate students are matched with career professionals who have at least five years of work experience in related academic fields. The program assists our students in bridging the gap between academics and the world of work by pairing students with sage professionals who provide career and professional advice, networking opportunities, and insight into the job market within their disciplines.

We are seeking mentors and encourage alumni and friends of the college to apply. Please contact Pamela Erickson, director, at perick@k-state.edu with questions or to apply. Further information can be found at he.k-state.edu/mentoring.