The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Recent Graduate Awarded American Kinesiology Association Award

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Recent graduate Paige Richmond ’20 has been awarded the American Kinesiology Association’s (AKA) Undergraduate Award. The award honors kinesiology students across the country whose academic and leadership records are distinctive.

Excited to have been awarded this recognition, Paige remarked, “The UMass Kinesiology department has so much to offer, from undergraduate research opportunities to accessible top-notch faculty and graduate students that genuinely care about student success. I have taken full advantage of these opportunities and have grown both as a student and researcher. Getting this recognition from a department that has given me so much means the world to me."

Paige worked as an undergraduate research assistant in the Physical Activity and Health Lab for the Movement Observation of Children and Adolescents (MOCA) under the direction of Professor John Sirard, who also served as Paige’s sponsor for her honors thesis, “The Effect of Gender Norms on Subjective and Objective Measures of Physical Activity.”

To complete her thesis, Paige first assisted in a pilot study for a doctoral dissertation, investigating the framework of benevolent sexism to explain gender disparities in physical activity. Completing her thesis gave Paige the necessary knowledge to intern at the Tucker Center for Research on Girls and Women in Sport in Minneapolis, Minnesota, this summer.

She also served as a peer advisor in the kinesiology department for two years under academic advisor Leeanne Leclerc. This experience allowed Paige to advise incoming kinesiology students as a new student orientation peer leader.

Beyond her vast contributions to the kinesiology department, Paige was a four-year member of the Minuteman Marching Band and became a sister of band service sorority, Tau Beta Sigma, where she was elected president during her senior year.

“I am grateful that I had the opportunity to give back to a band that has such a special place in my heart,” Paige said. “Maintaining a balance between academic opportunities and extracurriculars was key for my success at UMass.”

Paige graduated cum laude as a Commonwealth Honors College Scholar with greatest distinction this past spring.