Sport, health and well-being are important aspects of living at Franklin.
Franklin is dedicated to providing quality wellness services and improving its offerings based on student feedback. The university’s services include an on-campus recreational center, a licensed psychologist, and a school nurse.
First off, the Tone Athletic Center, or TAC, located on North Campus. Inside the TAC, members of the Franklin community have access to cardio and weight training equipment, a basketball court, a small rock-climbing wall, and sporting equipment. In past years, the university has held Krav Maga classes, yoga lessons, and Pilates. Just outside the building lies an open field where students often play soccer or have picnics when the weather permits.
Aniello de Lucia, the Coordinator of Recreational Sports, joined the Office of Student Life in 2018 and currently manages the gym. During his time at Franklin, Aniello has arranged various sporting events, including mountain biking, hiking, rowing, outdoor climbing, and paddleboarding. He also played a central role in organizing Franklin's athletic partnership with local universities and starting the Franklin Falcons, FUS’s intramural basketball team.
During the past year, Aniello has responded quickly and flexibly to ever-changing COVID-19 restrictions. Last March, when the federal and cantonal governments imposed COVID-related restrictions for the first time, the TAC closed its doors for a few weeks.
“At first, it was a bit hard because we had to close it completely. It was, more or less, from one day to another, in the middle of the semester. It was a bit of a shock. It took a bit of time to find an alternative,” Aniello stated. But he did find an alternative rather quickly. When permissible by law, the gym opened in a limited capacity. To limit the number of individuals in the gym at once, students had to reserve a time online.
As of today, the TAC is closed per Swiss guidelines, but Aniello still works with students to develop and plan COVID-safe physical activities. Some activities that have occurred include outdoor runs and workouts, virtual yoga classes, and mountain hikes. Additionally, he provides students with the opportunity to plan and lead their own activities.
According to Aniello, “The most interesting part [of his job] is joining the activities and seeing students try new things that they have never done before. It is very exciting to introduce students to new things.” While he finds it rewarding, the job also presents various challenges. He states that he must always be flexible when dealing with weather and finding activities that suit varying abilities.
Other than Franklin’s outdoor events and sporting activities, the university also offers a licensed psychologist and a school nurse. Corbin Moro, Franklin’s licensed psychologist and hypnotherapist, offers two free counseling sessions to each student per semester. Corbin also helps students seek academic accommodations. Cristina Schmid, referred to as Nurse Chris by students, helps students make medical appointments.