The department is one of many undergraduate allied health professional departments within the Westbrook College of Health Professions. As a student in these programs, you complete very similar coursework your first two years, before moving into major-specific coursework your last two years. As part of this coursework, you take combined courses in integrated health sciences that allow you to learn about different careers and experience interprofessional education activities that teach you to function as part of a health care team.
Frequently students ask what is the difference between the Athletic Training and Applied Exercise Science programs. The AT program prepares students for a career as an athletic trainer and focuses on athletic & orthopaedic injury prevention and rehabilitation. Clinical rotations occur during the sophomore through senior years. Graduates in AT frequently find positions in a school or orthopedic setting. The AES program is broader, enabling individuals to pursue diverse career fields such as ones that involve clinical exercise testing, cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation, and exercise prescription and instruction to improve health, fitness and athletic performance. Students in the AT program are prepared to sit for the Board of Certification (BOC) examination for entry-level athletic trainers. Students in the AES program can sit for the National Strength and Conditioning exam for both the Personal Trainer and Strength and Conditioning. The AES students can also become certified by the American College of Sports Medicine as either a Certified Exercise Physiologist or Certified Clinical Exercise Physiologist.
The department also offers a Nutrition minor where students will be introduced to topics ranging from how to properly cook different foods to local, regional and international global nutrition needs.
All of our programs are excellent gateways to graduate allied health professional programs due to their applied nature. Each year approximately 60% percent of the seniors are successful in gaining acceptance to graduate programs (Physical Therapy, Physician Assistant, Clinical Exercise Physiology, Accelerated Nursing, Chiropractic, Strength and Conditioning, etc.). Among graduates interested in entering the workforce immediately, 83% secure positions within six months of earning their degrees.
Please take time to learn about these programs and feel free to contact us if you have any questions about the ESP department.
We look forward to meeting you and sharing with you all the wonderful things our students are doing.
Paul Visich, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Professor/Chairman Exercise and Sport Performance Department
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