Carl Rogers, an influential humanist psychologist & proponent of student-centered learning, posited that an optimal environment for growth must meet three conditions: genuineness (being truly authentic and open with ones’ students, not putting up a façade), acceptance (“unconditional positive regard,” reserving judgment of others & appreciating them for their unique traits & strengths), and empathic understanding (real listening & genuine interest in learning about/from others). I have never met a person who illustrates these three pillars of cultivating growth in others more than Dr. Campbell.
Under his wing these past two years, I’ve learned the ins & outs of running a randomized controlled trial, mastered A-mode ultrasound and resting metabolic rate measurement, memorized glycolysis & the citric acid cycle (twice), learned how to keep a training lab in tip-top shape, and realized my calling as an exercise scientist - but the thing I most strongly hope I take away has nothing to do with my formal education. I hope to catch just a portion of his humility, humanness, and unparalleled ability to listen. Dr. Campbell sees every interaction with someone - regardless of stature - as an opportunity to learn and become a better person. He has never said as much, because he didn’t have to. I saw it every day in action. Though he literally *wrote the book* on sports nutrition, he was not afraid to learn from his students about a supplement’s potential mechanism of action in class, or to observe and ask questions as @megannicolehh
talked me through my strategy for my powerlifting meet. Practitioners, students, research subjects - Dr. Campbell understands that to not take the opportunity to learn something from everyone possible is to throw away a gift. .
Dr. Campbell walks the walk, leads a team from within, and lives for the science. He makes us want to learn, work, and grow not out of obligation, but pure passion for the craft. And he does this by simply being the genuine, accepting, & empathic lifelong learner that we all aspire to become. .
I couldn’t be more grateful for his mentorship & hope these two years were just the beginning of all I have to learn.