Director - Fitness Center /HPER Associate Director
Ary Servedio was born in Bayamon, Puerto Rico. At the age of three she moved to New York City and grew up in The Bronx. She attended Lehman College City University of New York (CUNY) in the Bronx from fall 1976 to January 1981 where she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Physical Education. She attended The Ohio State University’s Ph.D. program as a Graduate Teaching Assistant from 1982-1984. She graduated from The Ohio State University with a Master’s Degree in Exercise Science in 1983 and continued in the Ph.D. program for one more year. Her interests at The Ohio State University were in: Lifetime Fitness, Nutrition, Cardiac Rehabilitation, Graded Exercise Testing and Exercise Leadership. After two years of study in the Ph.D. program Ary decided she would not complete her Ph.D. as she and her husband Frank were about to start a family. She did not enter the work force full-time after completing her Master’s until her two daughters were both in elementary school.
Ary met her husband Frank at Herbert H. Lehman College in the Bronx. He was completing his Master’s degree as she was completing her undergraduate studies. They both attended The Ohio State University as Graduate Assistant’s in the Ph.D. program. Frank was one year ahead of Ary and he completed his Ph.D. in Exercise Science in 1984. They have two daughters, Amanda who is currently a sophomore at UCA on a Trustees Scholarship; and Kari Anne who is a sophomore at Conway High School.
In New York City Ary has taught Physical Education grades K – 8 and worked in the field of Corporate Fitness as a fitness specialist (responsibilities included: administering sub-maximal graded bicycle ergometer stress tests to corporate clients, instructed clients on proper use of exercise equipment, supervised the exercise floor, developed ad adjusted exercise programs on a daily basis for all clients) . While at The Ohio State University her graduate assistant responsibilities included leading cardiac rehabilitation exercise sessions, maximal and sub-maximal treadmill graded exercise stress testing (normal and cardiac patients), administering and leading group exercise classes in the Faculty/Staff Fitness Program, teaching undergraduate “Principles of Lifetime Fitness” and Diet & Exercise classes.
One of her most rewarding jobs while living in Hattiesburg, MS was working in the Forrest General Hospital’s Outpatient Nutrition Program from 1992 - 1995. She served as the exercise specialist in the New Direction Weight Loss Program as well as working with a Pulmonologist (at the hospital) in administering symptom limited graded exercise stress tests to pulmonary patients awaiting surgery for lung diseases. The weight loss program clients consisted of morbidly obese individuals
Ary and her family moved to Conway, AR in August of 1995. She worked at the American Management Fitness Center from 1996 – 1998. Her responsibilities consisted of administering fitness assessments and developing personalized workout programs, monitoring and updating the workout programs, training and supervising hourly employees, maintaining equipment and counseling clients with their exercise training programs.
Ary has also worked as a fund-raiser for the American Heart Association from 1999 – 2001 as a Jump Rope for Heart Specialist and had just been promoted to Heart Walk Director before applying for and receiving the position of Fitness Center Director at the University of Central Arkansas in July of 2001.
Her main responsibilities at The University of Central Arkansas include: interviewing, hiring and training 30 (+) student workers in the Fitness Center and auditioning, hiring and training (15 +) Group Exercise Instructors for the Group Exercise Classes each semester. She is also responsible for developing and marketing the group exercise classes on campus. Ary also supervises a new full-time staff member whose main responsibilities lie in the expansion of the UCA Fitness Assessment Program, developing wellness programming and developing a Personal Training Program. Ary also collaborates with other departments across campus in the implementation of fitness programming for students & faculty and staff involved in the UCA Employee Wellness Program.
Ary has been an avid fitness runner since 1978. You may see her running on the roads around her home usually in the evenings whenever she can find time to squeeze in a workout. She is a firm believer in “practicing what she preaches”. Although she doesn’t believe that preaching “AT” people about lifetime fitness is an appropriate way to lead people to make positive changes in their lives. She believes that everyone is entitled to their choices in life and the consequences that ensue from those choices. However, she is always ready willing and able to answer questions for students faculty and staff. Her door is always open.