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Thursday, April 26, 2018 - 11:45am
Dobbs Ferry Campus

The mood was festive, the weather cool and bright as 150 runners and walkers toed the starting line on the Dobbs Ferry Campus for the fourth annual Conquer the Trail Run/Walk, hosted by the Exercise Science Club on Saturday, April 22.


The annual run was instituted in 2015 by former club president Steven Estremera ’16, and advised by Dr. Patrick Davitt, assistant professor of exercise science. “Steve is an avid runner, and as club president he did a lot to get the group more fully engaged — not only with other Mercy students and faculty, but also the surrounding community,” said Davitt.


The club customarily earmarks a portion of the proceeds to support a charity, and this year they chose Gilda’s Club of Westchester, a cancer support organization. At the April event, teams of Mercy students wearing tee shirts and wristbands signified their participation in honor of Dr. Nann Hyland, a member of the Mercy faculty who is undergoing treatment for breast cancer.


This year the club raised approximately $1,500 for Gilda’s Club, plus additional funding that will enable the Exercise Science Club to expand its activities, both on campus and in the community.


The event accomplishes several other goals as well. “It gives club members a chance to introduce exercise science to the community and their peers in a fun way,” said Davitt. “They also gain experience in putting on a community event. Ultimately the students hope to get more people out there enjoying cardiovascular exercise — something they are pretty passionate about.”


“There’s a lot of social support and encouragement for people who might not normally think of themselves as runners,” he continued. “The mental lift you get from physical exercise, the sense of accomplishment — it all adds up, and many students start their own fitness regimen after they’ve participated. I mean, who doesn’t love crossing a finish line with all these people cheering you on?”