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Dr. Rozena McCabe, Professor of Kinesiology at Houston-Tillotson University (HTU), teaches under the philosophy that “the student should receive the knowledge through several sensory modalities and that learning is more permanent when students ‘do’ as well as ‘listen’.”
This was easily accomplished on a warm sunny Saturday in September as Dr. McCabe brought 15 kinesiology students two blocks down the hill from HTU to the TBC Offices in East Austin. From there, they departed on an eight mile spin with TBC’s TREK Hybrids though city streets and on the trail network along the recently renamed Lake Lady Bird in Austin. A bicycle safety training session for hand signals and “rules of the road” was held midway through the ride.
The university students learned basics on how to interact effectively with motorists on the street. As the “big dogs” on the trail, they learned how to ride around pedestrians of all ages safely and in a manner that did not diminish the walkers’ and joggers’ comfort and enjoyment of the trail.
Huston-Tillotson is one of sixteen Texas Universities that have participated in the TBCEF (Education Fund) SuperCollege Program since the TxDOT-funded SuperCyclist program was expanded in 2003 to certify future PE teachers while they are college students. SuperCollege class sizes range from 18 for a small school like HTU to about 125 annually at the University of Texas at Austin.
HTU students of all different levels of cycling experience got the chance to explore some of Austin’s streets and newest trail segments. TBCEF staff Brenda Chuleewah and Mark Stine got to know some of the students who are benefiting from the SuperCollege program and to develop ideas on making the program more effective.