As a student majoring in community health, she’s gotten her chance to spread the message about health on the St. Cloud State University campus and in the community through student work and internships.
Sunstrom worked for St. Cloud State Health Promotion to promote health on campus as a peer educator and promoting healthy choices at campus events such as Huskypalooza and other campus events.
“I’ve been interested in community health since I started running,” she said. “And promoting all of wellness, not just physical activity and nutrition — mental health, sexual health, all those things I’ve learned a lot about.”
Through internships Sunstrom worked to coordinate a healthy lunch, prizes and teams for Granite Equity Partners participating in the Granite Man triathlon and helped plan the on the Greater St. Cloud Development Corporation’s Workplace Well-Being summit.
“A lot of the things that I learned about promoting health and how programs actually work were definitely incorporated into my internship,” she said.
Sunstrom has earned all-conference and All-American honors for her efforts on the track. She competed in the cross country nationals meet in November in St. Leo, Florida finishing 34th in the nation at division II. She is an All-American in both cross country and a second team All-American in track and field in the 10,000 meter.
As a community health major, University Honors Program student and athlete, Sunstrom volunteered to tutor her fellow athletes and multicultural students in the Richard Green House Athletes for Success in the Classroom tutoring center.
“It’s really fun to get to know different athletes and different students in a kind of unique atmosphere,” she said. “The Green House is an actual house, so you can sit on a couch with someone and study like you would at an actual house.”
Sunstrom participated in these on-campus and community initiatives all while being a three sport athelete in cross country and indoor and outdoor track.
“There’s some really great staff, my coaches are awesome, my teammates are great, so I couldn’t have asked to meet better people here,” she said.
— Samantha Sunstrom, community health major
A graduate of Sauk Rapids-Rice High School, Sunstrom was drawn to St. Cloud State because of the coaches and the people she met when visiting the school.
“I grew up here my whole life and I’d never actually been on campus,” she said.
Through a campus visit, Sunstrom saw St. Cloud State as a university and really looked at its facilities.
“It was like any other college and had lot of cool things to it that I’d never seen before,” she said.
She’s enjoyed attending college close to home.
“It’s really nice because I am 15 minutes away from home, so I can go home for dinner or laundry if I want to, but I don’t have to go home,” she said. “It’s kind of like I can be here, and I’m still on my own, but I can go visit home when I need to.”