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REF NO.: 335

SUBJECT: Director of athletics appointed at Memorial University
DATE: July 12, 2006

Memorial University has appointed its first-ever full time director of athletics in the School of Human Kinetics and Recreation.
Michelle Healey has been named to the position effective immediately. She’ll report directly to Dr. Mary Bluechardt, director of the school.
Ms. Healey is well known at Memorial. Since 1999, she has been the program co-ordinator with Memorial Athletics. She was also a student athlete while studying at Memorial and has completed her bachelor and master’s degrees in physical education at the university.
Ms. Healey brings a wealth of experience and a passion for athletics to the new position, said Dr. Bluechardt.
“She also brings established working relationships in various departments across campus, and in the community. Michelle is no stranger to university sport and has been an active participant around the athletic director’s table in Atlantic Canada for a number of years. She is also well respected by her peers,” said Dr. Bluechardt.
As director of athletics, Ms. Healey will be responsible for developing, promoting, managing and evaluating the varsity athletics programs at Memorial. Other duties will also include leading and overseeing the management of the university’s varsity sports programs; building and fostering a team environment for Memorial athletics; and serving as the primary ambassador for all athletics programs, the university and its partners.
Ms. Healey will also be tasked with establishing and directing fundraising and corporate sponsorship programs, while cultivating a network of support locally, provincially and nationally through marketing and communications strategies, while fostering positive relationships with the community and media.
Taking on a new job is a welcome challenge for Ms. Healey.
“I believe my past experience as a student athlete and as an employee involved in the delivery of Memorial’s athletics programs and services will provide me with greater insight on many issues,” she said. “As a result of my passion for sport, I’ve spent a great deal of time observing and analyzing the way we operate and envisioning how we might be able to do things better and in the best interest of maximizing the sport experience of our student athletes.
“Athletic programs within a university setting offer great value to the institution in that they have an ability create spirit on campus, add marketing value to the university and provide elite athletes with an opportunity to pursue their sporting goals while completing post-secondary studies.”
Dr. Bluechardt said the director of athletics will help the School of Human Kinetics and Recreation offer innovative programming that allows students to reach their true potential and become top student athletes.
“A solid and thriving Varsity Athletics Program has the potential to make a significant contribution to the marketing of Memorial University,” she said.

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