Alumnus Goes Back to GWU for Degree in Physical Education

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Jody Raduly’s Passion is Teaching Health-Related Fitness

Jody Brent Raduly of Boiling Springs, N.C., has three degrees from Gardner-Webb University. While his focus changed from studying business to physical education, he discovered that all of the professors at GWU cared about helping him achieve his goals.

“I was not just taking a class that these individuals were teaching,” Raduly reflected. “They were placed in my path to guide me to meet my greatest potential as a future teacher in health and physical education as well as an industrious person in society. This guidance was not always just based on knowledge of content but also adoption of character.”

He received his first degree in 1991 in business administration with a minor in economics and social science. He took a job after graduation, but found he didn’t like working in an office. He wanted a job where he could be more active. After learning more about the physical education program at GWU, he spoke with Dr. Dee Hunt, retired vice president of Student Development and former chair of the Department of Health, Sport and Physical Education.

“Dr. Hunt advised me on what route to take to get back into school and assisted me in setting this new journey in motion,” Raduly shared. “She was the commanding force in the department with a big heart for all of her students. Then, her guidance impacted my learning and career choice greatly, and now she still serves an important role in my life and the life of my family.”

Other professors prepared him for student teaching and his own classroom. One demonstrated how to reach all learning styles and the other gave him resources that he still uses with his classes today. When he received his physical education licensure in 1999, Raduly was confident in his abilities. “The journey of education at Gardner-Webb thoroughly prepared me to be a great beginning teacher with the knowledge that learning as a teacher is lifetime,” he related. “These experiences had the right amount of classroom preparation, content acquisition, and field experiences in the real setting. There did not seem to be anything that came my way, from lesson planning to classroom management, that I was not prepared to handle immediately or with supervising/cooperating teacher guidance.”

Raduly earned his master’s in sport science and pedagogy from GWU in 2007 and supports his alma mater by hosting GWU students in his classroom. He has been teaching nearly 20 years at Boiling Springs Elementary School, a pre-K through fifth-grade school with approximately 550 students. Each student gets physical education twice a week for 45-minute sessions. “Teaching physical education affords me the opportunity to do something I am passionate about which is helping future generations to learn the importance of lifelong activity,” he remarked. “A big part of my program focuses on health-related fitness.”