The intersection of health and human behavior

Help others get on the path to wellness. At the intersection of health and human behavior, UNE’s Health, Wellness, and Occupational Studies degree will teach you how to work with diverse individuals and populations to assess their wellness and guide them toward healthier lives. We offer an optional specialization in Assistive Technology that will broaden your career horizons as you learn how to equip clients with tools that will enhance their independence. Combining health sciences, wellness promotion, and human occupation, this major is a perfect foundation to a health professions graduate degree or for careers in the health and wellness industry.

Why UNE for Health, Wellness, and Occupational Studies

You’ll earn your Health, Wellness, and Occupational Studies degree in a uniquely interprofessional educational environment. With more than a dozen health professions programs and a robust Education Department, UNE situates this major within a web of innovative, interdisciplinary University partnerships.

  • Meaningful service learning in the community
  • Undergraduate research opportunities
  • Optional Assistive Technology specialization
  • Optional Mental Health Rehabilitation Technician Certification
  • Flexibility to pursue a minor
  • GradVantage option for UNE’s Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy graduate programs
Headshot of U N E student Jared Benoit

UNE does a great job of connecting your classes to outside experiences. What I’m learning in my classes applies to my experience in the community.

Health, Wellness and Occupational Studies


The following are some examples of the exciting courses that the Health, Wellness, and Occupational Studies major offers:

  • Holistic Health
  • Stress Management
  • Equine-Assisted Therapy and Wellness
  • Foundations of Assistive Technology
  • Substance Misuse and Prevention
  • Disability Studies
  • Occupational Science
  • Introduction to Occupational Therapy

Assistive Technology Specialization

As a Health, Wellness, and Occupational Studies major, you may opt to pursue an Assistive Technology specialization. Assistive technology refers to devices, equipment, software, and apps that help people live with more independence. It includes communication devices for people who cannot communicate verbally, software for those with learning disabilities, smart home apps that allow older adults to live independently, computer access for people with physical disabilities, and many other tools that help people perform meaningful tasks.

An assistive technology professional (ATP) assesses clients who have disabilities or other challenges to determine if they would benefit from an assistive device. The ATP then selects the appropriate equipment and trains the clients to use the technology.

Our Health, Wellness, and Occupational Studies Assistive Technology specialization provides:

  • Five specialized courses
  • Assistive technology internship (3 credits)
  • Preparation for certification as an assistive technology professional through RESNA (Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America)


A U N E student shows an elementary school student how to use an i-pad


Through training in occupational science, motivational interviewing, assistive technology, wellness assessment, stress management, and health education, you will develop the technical and analytical skills needed for a rewarding career helping others reach their health goals.

  • Occupational Therapist
  • Physical Therapist
  • Assistive Technology Professional
  • Health Educator
  • Wellness Coordinator/Director
  • Guidance Counselor
  • Special Educator
  • Benefits Coordinator
  • Disability Advocate
  • Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor
  • Health Care Administrator
  • Case Manager

Growing Fast

The health care and social assistance industry is one of the largest industries in the country and jobs in the field are increasing at more than double the national average. Nearly 22 million jobs are projected by 2022 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Career Advising

Whether you have a specific career goal in mind or a vague idea of the field that interests you, Career Advising is here to help you plan your next step.


Campus Center

The 55,000-square foot Campus Center houses a sports complex that includes a 25-yard/six-lane handicapped-accessible swimming pool, an eight-person hot tub, and a fully-equipped fitness center with two racquetball courts and a free weight area. It also contains a 12,100-square-foot gym with a 1/12-mile balcony track, showers, a sauna, and locker rooms.

The Campus Center is also home to BodyWISE, a UNE and community-at-large resource designed especially for people who have specific physical performance objectives, ranging from rehabilitating physical limitations to enhancing peak athletic performance. BodyWISE is an extension of UNE's educational mission and serves as a clinical training program for exercise and sport performance students as well as students in other allied health professions programs.

Take a Virtual Tour of the Campus Center

Launch Campus Center

Center to Advance Interprofessional Education and Practice

UNE is one of a handful of private universities with a comprehensive health education mission that includes medicine, pharmacy, dental medicine, nursing, and an array of allied health profession programs. In UNE’s HWOS program, you will take part in interprofessional education initiatives that prepare you to work with other aspiring health professionals to practice comprehensive and collaborative team-based care. Through service-learning and field experiences, you benefit from exercises that also include students from other UNE health discipline programs.

Interprofessional Simulation and Innovation Center

As a HWOS student, you utilize our Interprofessional Simulation and Innovation Center to apply the knowledge you gain in the classroom to realistic clinical situations before putting actual patients at risk.

Guided by skilled instructors, you participate in simulations specifically designed to enhance your clinical aptitudes. Rather than just hearing about and reading about difficult or unusual cases, you experience them by treating our high fidelity patient simulators and patient actors in scenarios that mimic real life.

Tour the ISIC

Launch Innovation Hall

Take a virtual tour of Innovation Hall, which houses UNE's Interprofessional Simulation and Innovation Center

Experiential Learning

With a focus on skills development, the Health, Wellness, and Occupational Studies major provides opportunities for hands-on learning through collaborative projects, undergraduate research, service learning, internships, and extra-curricular activities that complement coursework.

Activities and Opportunities

  • Run a summer camp for children with autism spectrum disorder
  • Research adaptive sports, holistic health methods, and stress management
  • Earn certification as a Peer Health Educator
  • Organize Boys and Girls Club festivals
  • Mentor youth in empowerment programs
  • Implement community-based health interventions
  • Engage older adult cognition through creative arts
  • Design disability advocacy programs

Finding the Pieces Camp

The University of New England, City of Biddeford, and Autism Society of Maine partnered to develop the Finding the Pieces Camp. The camp, designed for children in York County who have autism, is staffed by undergraduate UNE students from the Health, Wellness, and Occupational Studies program and the Education program, all of whom have studied autism. Campers attend free of charge thanks to the support of generous sponsors.


HWOS internship sites are focused on community-based, health and wellness promotion. A wide array of enriching internship opportunities exist at sites including:

  • Maine Adaptive Sports and Recreation
  • Maine Medical Center Research Institute
  • Carlisle Academy Integrative Therapy and Sports
  • My Place Teen Center
  • St. Louis Child Development Center
  • St. Joseph's Rehabilitation & Residence

The HWOS Internship Coordinator, Collyn Baeder, M.P.H., connects you with community sites and supports you throughout the internship experience. A site supervisor provides direct supervision and guidance while on site. Through your internship, you make significant, positive impacts in the community, while gaining invaluable experience, skills, and mentorship.

You earn credit for the experience through the HWOS 490 Internship course, offered every Fall and Spring Semester. You can tailor the experience to fit with existing academic and extracurricular commitments, pursuing between one to three credit hours. Coursework includes weekly reflective journals and meetings, a foundational paper, an internship project, and a summative portfolio.

Contact HWOS Internship Coordinator, Collyn Baeder, M.P.H., at or (207) 602-2024 to learn more about your internship experience.

Service Learning

As part of the HWOS curriculum, you complete Service Learning Projects. These projects bring you out into the field to perform important work with local organizations while gaining invaluable experience and community connections — UNE’s Department of Service Learning offers additional opportunities. At the annual HWOS Day of Scholarship, student-led research projects are showcased to the UNE and the surrounding community at an interactive, professional poster session, where you practice skills in effective presentation and communication. 

Service-learning initiatives connect students, faculty, and professional staff with opportunities to engage in meaningful and mutually beneficial service activities within a variety of community settings. Service-learning instills a lifelong commitment toward helping others, while positively impacting individual, family, and community health outcomes among populations served. Examples include working with the homeless population, implementing health fairs, and developing age-appropriate recreational activities at a local Boys and Girls Club.