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Mother and Daughter Inspire Student Health and Fitness Through PEAP

Mother and Daughter Inspire Student Health and Fitness Through PEAP
April 29, 2024 Julieanna Diaz

Mother and Daughter Inspire Student Health and Fitness Through PEAP

Theresa Wenzel and her daughter, Alison Soltis ’21, are instructors in our Physical Education Activity Program (PEAP), teaching students how to safely engage in physical activity and lead lifestyles that will benefit their physical and mental health.

Wenzel joined the program in 1994 after her time in the United States Army. She has since taught over 20 different courses in PEAP. Soltis grew up witnessing her mother’s dedication to her students and Kinesiology and was drawn to follow in her footsteps, joining the program in 2023. “It was great to be able to come in and learn from her. She has been a big inspiration in my life,” said Soltis.

Texas A&M students participating in a KINE 199 course.

Now as colleagues, mom and daughter promote a healthy lifestyle through unique experiences such as an all-female strength training course offered through KINE 199. Wenzel said the course attracts students who may have never lifted weights before. “By the end of the class, they are just so proud of what they accomplished, and tell me ‘I feel so much stronger and confident,’” she added. KINE 199 includes other activity courses such as pickleball, kayaking, running, self-defense and yoga.

PEAP also offers science courses where students can explore different health and wellness topics. From understanding vital signs such as heart rate and blood pressure to learning what these measurements reveal about overall health, students are empowered with knowledge to lead healthier lives. “The kids get something here that lets them be successful,” said Frank Thomas, Chair of PEAP. “Whether that be a reduction in anxiety or stress, or just getting fit — they find something here.”

Students can tailor classes to their academic needs by enrolling in KINE 199 courses with pass/fail grading. They can also use KINE 120 and 223 to fulfill Texas A&M University’s Life and Physical Science Core Curriculum requirements.

Wenzel and Soltis look to inspire and empower more students through PEAP, promoting the program’s focus on fitness, wellness, and activity throughout a lifetime. “I have repeat students in so many of my classes,” Soltis said. “Whether you’re an engineer or English major, I believe that exercise should be a part of your life.”

PEAP is housed in our Department of Kinesiology and Sport Management. To learn more about the program, visit

For media inquiries, contact Ruben Hidalgo.

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