Global Scholars fitness room offers future promise

By Jonathan Alexander
NCCU Staff Writer
the Durham VOICE

Parents are getting more than they bargained for at Global Scholars Academy. Not only does their child have the opportunity to get attend an cutting-edge school, but they have the opportunity to use a fitness room built within the school.

Global Scholars Academy is across from Union Baptist Church in Northeast Central Durham. According to their website, Global Scholars Academy, formerly Union Independent School is a charter school that strives to create greater developmental equity for Durham youth who represent the greatest risks of academic failure due to challenges in the home.

The school educates over 100 students in grades K-4, with classrooms and healthy learning environments. However, one of the most surprising things visitors see is the fitness room located between school hallways and the gymnasium at the side of the school.

The largely unused fitness room located in the heart of Global Scholars Academy, holds promise as a hot exercise spot in the community. (Photo courtesy of Martina Hicks)

The fitness room, equipped with state-of-the-art weight and exercise machines, was funded by Union Baptist Church with the goal of helping community members get healthy while generating revenue for the school.

Martina Hicks, finance and business manager for Global Scholars academy, is currently responsible for the fitness room.

“Some parents will either come in the front end or the tail end of school and use the facility,” said Hicks.

Parents and school staff are the only ones currently allowed to use the fitness room, however, Global Scholars Academy hopes to open it up to the community and sell memberships.

The only thing stopping them is finding someone to run the fitness room and organizing a business plan that makes the most sense.

With the proposals they have gotten, Global Scholars Academy hopes for it to be a revenue generator. The one thing that is important for their school is that it works around the schedule of their students.

“If you’re limiting hours, you’re limiting revenue,” said Hicks.

Because the workout room is in the heart of the school, it can pose a safety problem. Accessibility should be easier, so now the school is at a stalemate with its proposals.

“You have to look at all of the issues. (In particular) the insurance components, so it does not interfere with the children,” said Hicks. “Our top priority is our kids, but it is a working process.”