Skip to main content

Spotlight Spotlighting a UH Woman Each Month

Melanee Wood
Assistant Director, Campus Recreation

How long have you worked at UH?
6.5 years

What do you enjoy most about your work?
I love the students! The students that I work with bring so much joy to my life. It’s fulfilling to watch them develop during their time with me and then go on to be successful young adults implementing the skills that they’ve learned. Every day in my role brings unique challenges that I enjoy working through. At my core, I see myself as a problem solver who wants to have a positive impact on people. My role at UH gives me the chance to do exactly that.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Professionally, I am the most proud that I have been able to grow our Fitness programs and services while staying committed to a core value of student success. Developing young students into Group Fitness Instructors and Personal Trainers is hard work! But rather than hiring instructors/trainers from the Houston Metro area, we (my team and I) have risen to the task AND have increased participation in our programs at the same time. There are thousands of Coogs whose health is positively impacted and hundreds who have learned important professional skills through the fitness programs on campus.

What advice would you share with UH students?
Go Get it! An awesome life is out there waiting for you!

I was competing in a charity car rally across India a few years ago. It was hard and long and logistically difficult, but I wanted the experience. Toward the end of the trip, I came across a fantastic quote that is now framed in my office. We were at a school for Tibetans in the base of the Himalayas; at an entry way to an overlook off the side of the mountain. “Live as if you are to die tomorrow, learn as if you were to live forever.” (Mahatma Gandhi). It was perfect. My “go get it” attitude led me to this incredible place which validated the work that I was doing and the life that I was living. There was something ethereal in that moment that has stayed with me for years.

What is something about you that your co-workers do not know?
People are usually surprised to find out that I’m naturally an introvert. I had to work really hard through college to overcome my shyness and that work has served me well as a professional. I am so grateful for my job as Group Fitness Instructor at Miami University. It got me up in front of people and out of my shell in a stressful environment. I was so nervous that I threw up before every class that I taught for 6-weeks. But I wanted it and I persisted. Today I credit my public speaking ability and improved social skills to that learning experience as a student.