Suing Becomes Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist
Jocelyn Suing, physical education and health teacher, saw a need for an additional Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) at Bennington High School – specifically a female in the role.
With more than 200 students enrolled in various strength and conditioning classes each year, not all students previously had access to a teacher with this specific certification. Suing made it a goal to pursue her CSCS, so applied for funding through the Bennington Public Schools Foundation’s Classroom Grant Program to cover the cost of the exam and prep materials.
“We will be able to more consistently provide students and staff with access to a female and male with not only a mastery of content and skill-sets specific to strength and conditioning, but also access to two teachers identified as being more capable of transferring that content and those skill-sets to our Bennington students and staff,” she wrote in her grant application.
Suing passed the CSCS exam on June 9th, 2020 and has quickly benefited the 215 students she teaches each day. She joins Brandon Mimick as the second BHS teacher with this title.
“I just feel so much more prepared this year with the certification. I understand all the energy systems, how the nervous system works when the body is moving, the correct movement techniques to teach, and I feel the students trust me more now that I have the CSCS certification,” she said.
She also hopes having a female CSCS at school encourages female athletes to embrace the positive impacts of strength and conditioning. Her goal is to promote strength training in all students’ lives because it may eliminate a lot of physical, emotional and mental health problems in their future.
“Coach Mimick does a fantastic job working with our female students. He has definitely set the tone that it is just as important for our females to be “strong” and fast just like our male students. I think with me being a female, it might resonate with our female athletes a little more. There used to be a stigma that females don’t want to “bulk up” so they didn’t take Strength and Conditioning at Bennington. Females don’t naturally “bulk” up with strength and conditioning! I want to get that straight! We have fought that hard the past ten years and now we push that strength training is important for every body,” she said.
The Foundation’s Classroom Grant Program has been supporting ideas like these in the district since 2008, and awards around $30,000 in funding each spring. Learn more about the program and see other examples at https://benningtonschoolsfoundation.org/classroom-grants/