When NiCole Keith, Ph.D., FACSM, was elected the 64th president of the American College of Sports Medicine (2020-2021), she became the first person of color to hold that position in the college's history. In this video interview with ACSM Historian Sean Walsh, Ph.D., FACSM, Dr. Keith discusses how her mother motivated her to pursue academics, the need that she saw as a student to increase racial and ethnic diversity in the field of exercise science, and how she has been involved with initiatives at ACSM to drive improvements in this area (as well as many others).
During Black History Month, initiate a conversation with your students about diversity in the fields of exercise science and sports medicine. Share Dr. Keith's interview and use the below questions to spark important discussion about how we can all actively work to increase diversity across the disciplines in which we study and work.
Questions for discussion:
Download the questions as a PDF handout
- What number president of ACSM is Dr. NiCole Keith?
- What is unique, and long overdue, in regard to Dr. Keith’s election to the presidency of ACSM?
- Dr. Keith has had a number of great mentors throughout her career. What can you take away from her mentee experience that could help you in your career?
- How important do you think it was for Dr. Keith to participate in ACSM’s National Meeting? What about her involvement with ACSM’s New England Chapter? How do you think getting involved at a regional level was important for her?
- What opportunity did Dr. Keith see for improving diversity, equity and inclusion at ACSM?
- How can ACSM members or certified professionals address inequality and underrepresentation in health care and fitness?
- What is the Leadership and Diversity Training Program? Have you thought about participating in it?
- Dr. Keith speaks about how ACSM has approached diversity over the past decades. How might you approach diversity in the coming decades?
- Dr. Keith shares what being an ACSM member means to her. What things attract you to ACSM and make you want to be a member?
- What has ACSM done to make a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion for the future? What do you think you can do to further this pursuit?
Interested in applying for ACSM's Leadership & Diversity Training Program? Applications are accepted through December 1 for placement the following year. Must be an ACSM member and currently enrolled in or completed a graduate level program in one of the related fields. Learn more.
Interested in applying to be a mentor for ACSM's Leadership & Diversity Training Program? Mentors are required to attend the ACSM Annual Meeting and be an ACSM Fellow. Learn more.