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Undergraduate Catalog

2012 - 2013

BS in Exercise and Wellness
(60.5 hours*)

The Discipline

Exercise and Wellness is a departure from the typical U.S. medical model in that the focus is on helping individuals achieve optimal health and fitness rather than on discovering and treating disease. Recent research findings, along with rising health-care costs, have spurred an interest in keeping people healthy to improve their quality of life and also to avoid unnecessary medical expenses.

Depending on electives completed, there are several excellent career and graduate school options to pursue. Earning a master's degree in exercise science, for example, can give the added knowledge and experience needed to direct a private, commercial, corporate, or clinical health/fitness program. Other graduate school opportunities include a master's in public health (MPH), business administration (MBA), recreational therapy (MS), or nutritional science (MS), to name a few.

Career Opportunities

Exercise and wellness professionals find employment primarily in commercial or community fitness centers but may also work in hospital wellness programs or corporate health-promotion programs. Job responsibilities typically involve teaching clients how to achieve optimal wellness through effective exercise, wholesome nutrition, and successful stress-management strategies.

Exercise and wellness professionals may function at a staff or management level. Staff personnel often conduct one-on-one counseling sessions on a variety of health-related subjects as well as perform fitness testing and exercise prescription. They also may conduct workshops, conferences, or seminars on exercise, nutrition, stress management, weight control, and many other topics.

Program directors typically possess a master's degree with several years of experience working in a health promotion/wellness environment. As a program director, additional responsibilities typically include financial budgeting, marketing, program administration and evaluation, and personnel hiring and training.

Students pursuing a degree in exercise and wellness are usually more successful in their profession if they gain expertise in the following areas: counseling, public speaking, behavior change, business, first aid, gerontology, or aerobic dance teaching. It is also strongly recommended that students obtain a health/fitness certification through a reputable certifying organization.

Survey data indicate that personal trainers earn $51,000 annually in the U.S. Throughout the U.S. salaries range from $37,000 to $63,000. Health promotion program directors' salaries are similar to those of personal trainers, with more earning potential for individuals with graduate degrees and/or experience.

Program Requirements    |    View MAP

  1. Complete the senior exit interview.
  2. Complete the following prerequisites to the exercise and wellness core:
  3. Complete the following required core:
  4. Complete four hours from the following:
  5. Complete 25 hours from the following:

*Hours include courses that may fulfill university core requirements.

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