Exercise Science and Sport
Paul T. Cutrufello, Ph.D., LAT, ATC, CSCS, Chair and Program Director of Exercise Science
Debra L. Fetherman, Ph.D., MCHES, ACSM EP-C, Program Director of Community Health Education
Bryon C. Applequist, Ph.D.
Jessica Bachman, Ph.D., MS-MPH, RD
Joan A. Cebrick Grossman, Ph.D., RD
Michael J. Landram, Ph.D.
Andrew C. Vanezia, Ph.D.
The Department of Exercise Science and Sport consists of five areas: a major in Exercise Science, a major in Community Health Education , a Coaching Minor , a concentration in Nutrition Studies and Physical Education classes.
Exercise Science is the study of human movement as related to exercise and physical activity from an applied, primarily life science perspective. It is dedicated to promoting and integrating scientific research and education on the effects and benefits of exercise, and to the delivery of physical-activity programs that prevent disease, facilitate rehabilitation, promote health, and enhance human performance. Exercise Science is part of the field of Sports Medicine, which also includes clinical areas of study. The scientific aspects of Sports Medicine include exercise physiology, nutrition, biochemistry of exercise, and biomechanics. Testing of lactic acid metabolism, analysis of muscle fatigue, research on muscle hypertrophy and bone density, measurement of body composition, and benefits of exercise in cardiovascular disease, diabetes, osteoporosis and weight control are a few of the many contributions made by exercise scientists to Sports Medicine.
Few academic program majors offer such diverse opportunities after graduation as Exercise Science. The academically rigorous curriculum prepares graduates with knowledge and experience for employment opportunities in a variety of settings. Careers in applied health areas, include corporate, community and hospital-based wellness programs, cardiopulmonary rehabilitation, and research centers investigating the benefits of exercise in chronic disease states. Becoming a strength and conditioning specialist for a sports team is also a career option.
There are four tracks to choose from in the Exercise Science program: Pre-professional Track, Pre-health Track, Applied Kinesiology Track, and the 3-year Pre-professional Track. The Pre-professional Track provides the opportunity to complete the prerequisites for students interested in pursuing graduate degrees in Physical Therapy, Physician’s Assistant, or other allied health professions. The 3-year Pre-professional Track includes the same courses but includes summer and intersession courses allowing the student to complete their coursework in three years rather than four. It is the student’s responsibility to be aware of the specific prerequisites required by their graduate school(s) of interest as prerequisites may differ between universities offering the same program. The Pre-Health Track is designed to offer the prerequisites for students interested in matriculating into medical, dental, podiatry or optometry school and the Applied Kinesiology Track is designed for students interested in a focus on strength and conditioning. Any of these tracks is appropriate for someone interested in a graduate program in an exercise science related discipline.
Students should make their career intentions known early in their program of study so that they may be guided to the most appropriate track and utilize their electives in order to achieve their career goals. In addition to the advising provided by PCPS Academic Advising and the Exercise Science Department, students interested in attending medical school should participate actively in the Health Professions Organization and seek advising from Dr. Mary Engel, Director of Medical School Placement (570-941-7901). Students interested in completing the prerequisites for a Physician’s Assistant program should seek advising from Father Timothy Cadigan, Ph.D. (570-941-4348). Although not required, completion of the program provides students with the ability to take different certification exams offered by several professional organizations including the American College of Sports Medicine and the National Strength and Conditioning Association.
Graduating Exercise Science majors must possess a minimum overall grade point average of 2.75 and a grade point average of 2.75 or higher within the major. All major (EXSC) and cognate courses must be completed with a minimum grade of “C.” Students may progress and take any course within the EXSC major provided the pre-requisite course(s) for that course have been completed with a minimum grade of “C.”
The Physical Education courses are designed to improve the physical fitness levels of each student, introduce new activities, or improve and increase students’ recreational skills. Physical education credits may be taken as an elective credits.
There are a variety of Physical Education classes which may vary by semester or year. Grading is (S) Satisfactory or (U) Unsatisfactory.
Courses for Exercise Science and Sport are listed under the prefixes NUTR, EXSC, PHED, and PSYC. For more information on these and all courses offered, visit our Course Descriptions page.
For more information about the Exercise Science & Sport department, visit its website.