In Memoriam of Susan M. Puhl, Ph.D.
Faculty, students, staff and alumni in Cal Poly’s Kinesiology Department are mourning the loss of a dear friend and colleague, Dr. Susan Puhl, who passed away suddenly on August 6, 2007.
Dr. Puhl dedicated her professional life to physical education, physical activity and health and to providing opportunities for young people to participate in physical activity and further their own education as physical activity professionals. She graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor’s of science degree in physical education and health from Southeast Missouri State University in 1976 and graduated with academic distinction with a master’s degree in motor learning from Southeast Missouri State University in 1978. She attended the Pennsylvania State University and received her doctorate in exercise physiology in 1986. She was inducted into the Parkway District Hall of Fame in November 2004. She and other inductees such as Stone Phillips and Ryan Young earned this distinction because of the manner in which their career achievements brought honor and distinction to the Parkway School District.
Susan joined the Kinesiology faculty in 1999. During her tenure at Cal Poly, she actively embodied Cal Poly’s philosophy of "learn by doing" and encouraged her students – undergraduate and graduate – to participate in research projects. She provided excellent leadership in the Human Performance Laboratory as the director of PolyFit, Cal Poly’s on campus fitness testing and exercise prescription program as well as serving as the primary instructor of exercise physiology and graduate research methods. She also "lived" a physically active lifestyle in a variety of ways. She and her brother climbed the peaks of Machu Picchu in Peru! She was a member of the Pale Kae Outrigger Canoe Club in nearby Avila Beach and would often go for a run along Pismo Beach.
Prior to joining the faculty at Cal Poly, she taught at State University of New York at Cortland, Loch Haven University of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania State University. We will miss her energy, creativity and dedication to the Kinesiology Department. Her wealth of information and lifelong commitment to education will live on and be available to students in a designated research and reference area in the human performance laboratory.
Members of the Cal Poly community will come together and celebrate her life in early October. Please contact Camille O’Bryant (firstname.lastname@example.org) for additional information. In lieu of flowers or cards, the family requests that donations be made in her memory to Loaves and Fishes of Tompkins County, New York. To make a monetary donation, checks should be written to "Loaves & Fishes" and mailed to 210 N. Cayuga St., Ithaca NY 14850.