Academic Department Changes Name, Announces Interim Head
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Bart Hammig, an associate professor of community health promotion at the University of Arkansas, has been named interim head of the department of health, human performance and recreation by Tom Smith, dean of the College of Education and Health Professions.
This department, which is part of the College of Education and Health Professions, was previously called the department of health science, kinesiology, recreation and dance. The new name, which becomes effective Friday, July 1, more accurately reflects the academic programs offered by the department, Smith said. Hammig's appointment also becomes effective July 1.
Sharon Hunt, the department's head for the past 21 years, will return to the faculty. She is a professor of recreation and sport management. Hunt will also continue to serve as the university's faculty athletics representative to the NCAA and the Southeastern Conference. Chancellor G. David Gearhart appointed her to the position last year.
Hunt was instrumental in establishing the graduate athletic training education program in the College of Education and Health Professions, and she has worked closely with athletics on that program.
"Through Dr. Hunt's leadership, this department has grown to offer some of the most in-demand majors on campus, and faculty members have contributed important research in their fields," Smith said. "We expect the majors offered in the newly named department of health, human performance and recreation to continue to attract bright, creative students who will excel in their chosen fields of helping people. Dr. Hammig is well-qualified to serve as interim department head and will keep our momentum going as we search for a new head of the department."
The department offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in community health promotion; kinesiology, which includes concentrations in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade physical education, exercise science for pre-professional majors and applied exercise science; and recreation and sport management. The department also operates three research and service units: Human Performance Lab, Office for Studies on Aging and University of Arkansas Sport Biomechanics Group.
The department offers one class in ballroom dance. The university offers other dance coursework through the department of drama in the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences.
Hammig joined the faculty of the College of Education and Health Professions in 2008. He holds four degrees from the University of Kansas including a doctorate in health education and a Master of Public Health degree in epidemiology. He previously taught at Missouri State University and Southern Illinois University Carbondale.
"I appreciate the opportunity to serve as interim department head and look forward to working with our faculty and students toward continued success in the classroom and in their research endeavors," Hammig said.
Hammig also has experience in the public health sector as an epidemiologist for the state of Kansas and research fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. His research interests include violence-related and accidental injuries and health risk behavior.