For nearly 135 years, Kansas Wesleyan University and the Salina Family YMCA have stood just miles apart. The two organizations have always enjoyed a strong relationship, but have now taken that partnership to another level.
KWU and the Y announced Monday that, beginning April 1, they will advance their long-standing partnership with new, tangible benefits to both organizations. All full-time, on-ground KWU faculty, staff and students will receive free membership to the Y, while KWU will provide two graduate assistants to help run Y sports programs and will employ a strength and conditioning coach that will work for both organizations. The university will provide additional support services at the Y’s main Salina location as well.
Monday’s announcement strengthens a long-running relationship. KWU has hosted “Tumble in the Jungle,” an annual Y-sponsored regional gymnastics event that includes more than 500 competitors, for the past several years. The university also helped house the Y’s “Campus Connections” program this past year, contributing study space for middle school students at the edge of KWU’s campus, and has sent numerous students to intern or work part-time. In recent years, KWU students have aided multiple departments at the Y, ranging from study assistance to information technology to wellness and sports camps. One of those students, Evin Miller ’20, was recently hired as a full-time marketing specialist, and many others have continued to volunteer or work for the organization part-time after graduation.
“KWU has always had an excellent relationship with the Y,” agreed Dr. Matt Thompson, KWU president. “Today’s agreement deepens our collaboration and provides an incredible benefit to our faculty, staff and students. We believe in partnering with strong, local organizations to enhance the work of both groups. I’m impressed with Angie Lassley’s leadership and the work of the Salina Y as a major contributor to the health of our community.”
The latest KWU/Y agreement provides not only access to mobile apps that encourage fitness and help develop sport skills, but also access to Y services at any location in the country. That gives KWU employees and students work-out options at more than 2,600 Y locations. Family and spouses can also be added on to the membership at significantly discounted rates.
In addition, both groups may use each other’s facilities, as needed, after regular business hours. This could include for activities such as gatherings, socials and KWU intramurals.
“This is a great partnership for both of our organizations,” said Lassley, President and CEO of the Salina Family Y. “Both KWU and the Y are dedicated to bettering the Salina community. As we begin this agreement, we look forward to partnering in that goal and finding new, unique ways to accomplish it.”
For more information about the Salina Family YMCA, visit salinaymca.org.