How empty stadiums play a role in an athlete’s performance and mental health

Assistant Professor Alan Chu is the Chair of the Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology Masters Program at UW-Green Bay, a new program with its first cohort this fall. Chu said a fan cheering on their favorite team plays a much bigger role than we might think. “When the players see the fans, they’re able to get those attentional cues and be able to celebrate or focus on certain tasks,” said Chu.

Source: How empty stadiums play a role in an athlete’s performance and mental health

Rozalyn Stoa diving into the water during a Feb. 2019 swimming and diving team meet at the Kress Events Center pool.

Rising Phoenix: This UW-Green Bay Alumna dives into graduate school with National Sorority Award

UW-Green Bay Phi Kappa Phi alumna Rosalyn Stoa received great news this summer. She was selected for the National PKP Fellowship Program for 2020. This award was given to graduate students only and Stoa was the chapter nominee for UW-Green Bay.

The application included a summary of her accomplishments, a personal statement, an example paper that she wrote, a transcript, and letters of recommendation. Compared to her grad school applications, she said this was a piece of cake.

“I actually had forgotten that I applied to this scholarship (‘COVID and all made time abstract’). It was awesome to hear and I was over-the-moon ecstatic when I got the news. I’ve applied for UW-Green Bay awards and scholarships, but nothing at the national level before, so it felt like I was breaking out of my little Green Bay shell,” said Stoa.

Rosalyn Stoa
Rosalyn Stoa

The former Green Bay Phoenix swimmer and local Preble High School graduate was also a student researcher in Psychology. Due to COVID-19, she celebrated her Spring 2020 graduation by participating in Dive-Thru Commencement.

She recommends that students apply for any scholarships or internships that come their way and get involved in things that interest you.

“I would say that getting involved with a variety of things, such as research, club leadership, community service and having a good working relationship with your professors gives you a leg up. Communicate with your professors and have them look over application materials. Being open to new opportunities, even if they seem outside of your wheelhouse is extremely beneficial. If it doesn’t work out, you’ve at least learned something.”

She will receive an award of $8,500 for graduate school and is attending Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado to pursue a Ph.D. in Industrial Organizational Psychology.

Story by Charlotte Berg, intern, Marketing and University Communication

Prof. Hillhouse notes publication and call for research assistants

UW-Green Bay Assistant Prof. Todd Hillhouse (Psychology) recently published an article with his students that evaluated the antidepressant effects of a novel compound for treatment resistant depression. Hillhouse plans to continue this and other research projects in his behavioral pharmacology lab. He is currently accepting undergraduate research assistants. Know a student who might be interested? Please email hillhout@uwgb.edu

Faculty note: Prof. Alan Chu gives tip to nurturing mindfulness and acceptance in a Psychology Today article

Chair of the Sport, Exercise and Performance Psychology M.S. Program, Prof. Alan Chu offered tips for regular well-being practice with self-compassion, meditation, and gratitude in a Psychology Today article titled The Secret to Mastering Acceptance.
Via Psychology Today, Aug 17, 2020.

Prof Chu discusses the importance of fulfilling our basic psychological needs to stay motivated at work

In an article on 12 Ways to Stay Focused, Motivated, and Productive While Working, wherever people are, Assistant Prof. and Chair of Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology Alan Chu discusses the importance of fulfilling our basic psychological needs—autonomy, competence, and relatedness—to stay motivated at work. His perspective can be seen at Smallpdf.

UW-Green Bay Psychology student Paige Anderson details her online experience

Although UW-Green Bay is intending to be open in fall and welcoming faculty, staff and students back on campus, some classes originally scheduled for in-person instruction will be moving online or having online aspects to them for the safety of the UW-Green Bay community. Current UW-Green Bay students who transitioned to online learning in Spring 2020 demonstrated that they are resilient problem-solvers and describe their experiences while providing some advice to future students…

Paige Anderson is a Psychology major entering her senior year.

Paige Anderson

“I personally love in-person classes. I feel much more disciplined to go to class, participate and really retain what I’ve been learning when I can see a real person presenting the information and others around me learning the material. Online classes can in-part be a challenge if the in-person experience is something that I (or other students) use as a motivator or a tool to stay engaged. This is because in an online class, one can expect that if the class is lecture-based, one may find PowerPoints or other forms of presentations uploaded to Canvas, along with weekly ‘to-do lists’ of what is expected to be completed each week. Sometimes, one may be required to read a chapter of the course text, or to complete a quiz, or to watch a video clip, etc., and while almost all of my professors have been clear in what is to be done each week, it can be lonesome because it is self-paced and individual, rather than sitting next to your classmates each day. One of the best ways to combat this, if you’re nervous about this format, is to stick to what you know works for you! I like hand-written notes versus a computer, so I would still write my notes in a notebook to give me an in-person feel (See Rocketbook products if you’re interested in handwritten notes that can be uploaded to your computer for quick access!).

Also, stay connected with your classmates! Maybe do a Zoom call or exchange social media usernames so you can talk about the class to avoid any feelings of isolation. This is a perfect time to get to know your professors and ask them questions about the course—especially if you’re not fully comfortable with asking questions in person yet, this is a great time to practice those skills. Also, remember that this is an unprecedented time for everybody, and your resilience is noticed, favored, and commemorated, so hang in there!”

Faculty note: Prof. Chu shares insights on sport psychology, sleep, and productivity in the Deep Into Sleep Podcast

Do you know many world-class athletes such as LeBron James and Usain Bolt are “sleep champions”? Assistant Prof. and Chair of Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology Prof. Alan Chu shares his insights on sport psychology, sleep, and productivity in the most recent episode of the Deep Into Sleep Podcast hosted by a clinical psychologist.

UW-Green Bay Psychology student Hayley Verbenten shares virtual learning advice

Although UW-Green Bay is intending to be open in fall and welcoming faculty, staff and students back on campus, some classes originally scheduled for in-person instruction will be moving online or having online aspects to them for the safety of the UW-Green Bay community. Current UW-Green Bay students who transitioned to online learning in Spring 2020 demonstrated that they are resilient problem-solvers and describe their experiences while providing some advice to future students…

Hayley Verbenten

Hayley Verbenten is a junior Psychology major with an emphasis in Mental Health and an Education minor.

“Personally, I thought I would struggle with having all online classes when we were told we would have to make the transition in spring. I was used to having one or two online classes and the rest in-person. I like the structure of having in person classes, and it serves as a reminder for me to make sure I am getting all of my homework and studying done. When moving to online classes, I tried to make sure I treated them as normal classes. I would set aside certain times and days for each class, as well as time to study and do any extra work required for the class. I always kept an assignment notebook to keep myself organized. Working ahead is always a good option if possible!

There are so many peer mentors, faculty advisors and other professors that are willing to help if you are having trouble with online classes. We also have an IT department that is great for all questions with printers, computers, etc.

The most important things are to make sure you stay organized, and don’t be afraid to reach out for help! It is better to ask for help right away than fall behind.”

Weight loss a goal? Assistant Prof. Chu has advice

UW-Green Bay Assistant Prof. and Chair of Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology Alan Chu (Psychology) shared his insights on using the power of “yet” (a growth mindset) MyFitnessPal’s post titled 8 Strategies to Boost Weight Loss, According to Psychologists. “Success in school, work, sports and almost every area of human endeavor can be dramatically influenced by our mindset about our talents and abilities,” says Prof. Chu, “A growth mindset frames abilities and situations as changeable with hard work, and a fixed mindset frames abilities as inborn and not changeable.” To try it, Chu recommends adding the word “yet” to any challenge you’re currently dealing with. For instance: I haven’t reached my ideal weight … yet. I’m not making it to the gym three times a week … yet. I haven’t figured out an eating plan that works for me … yet. These types of statements signal to your brain that even though things aren’t exactly how you want them to be right now, you can get where you want to go with time and effort.