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UM Kinesiology Student Wins National Doctoral Student Award

The American Kinesiology Association has awarded the 2019 AKA National Doctoral Scholar Award to Scott Dankel, a doctoral student in health and kinesiology at the University of Mississippi.

“(Dankel) was selected from AKA Doctoral Scholars nationwide as the doctoral student with the most distinguished academic and leadership record,” said Christopher M. Hearon, chair of the AKA Student Awards Committee. “This is the sixth year that AKA has recognized the top doctoral kinesiology student in the nation with this prestigious award.”

Dankel, of Howell, New Jersey, earned his bachelor’s degree in health and physical education at Rowan University and his master’s in exercise science from UM. His research interests include exercise physiology, neurophysiology, skeletal muscle physiology, human performance, resistance training, exercise intervention and muscle biology.

A contributor or lead author of more than 100 scholarly publications, Dankel recently was recognized for leading a meta-analysis of cuff versus intra-arterial blood pressure measurements.

“This is simply outstanding,” said Minsoo Kang, chair of health, exercise science and recreation management. “This award means Scott is basically the best kinesiology doctoral student in the nation.

“On behalf of the department, we appreciate all of the dedication and hard work Scott puts forth in his studies. We are really proud of him.”

AKA sponsors awards in four categories: Undergraduate Scholar, Master’s Scholar, Doctoral Scholar and the Graduate Student Writing. The AKA Doctoral Scholar Award is intended to recognize and promote academic excellence, to further the professional competence and dedication of academically accomplished doctoral students and to promote kinesiology and its related fields.

The AKA Awards Committee reviewed the nominations from all member departments and selected the national award winners. The recipients receive a $250 gift certificate from Human Kinetics in addition to a national certificate of recognition. National award winners also will be noted on the AKA website.

“It is an honor to receive this award,” Dankel said. “I was put in a great position to be successful with the faculty and staff at the University of Mississippi.

“I had the pleasure of working with Dr. Jeremy Loenneke for the previous five years. His mentorship, along with the help of some very intelligent graduate students in our laboratory, is why I am receiving this award. I think this award says a lot about our department at the University of Mississippi and the dedication of our faculty toward developing successful students.”

Dankel has accepted a faculty position at his undergraduate alma mater, in the Department of Health and Exercise Science at Rowan University’s School of Health Professions.

The UM School of Applied Sciences, home of the Department of Health, Exercise Science and Recreation Management, offers professional preparation programs that integrate academic study, clinical training, creative research, service-learning and community outreach, leading to the development of leaders whose professional endeavors will improve health and well-being.

By Sarah Sapp

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