Visit majormaps.vcu.edu for the online version with links.
Sponsored by the Office of the Provost
Major map compass icon
2019-2020

Health, Physical Education, and Exercise Science (HPEX)

College of Humanities and Sciences

Concentration(s):
Exercise Science
Program description
The Department of Kinesiology and Health Sciences offers programs that prepare students to pursue careers that utilize exercise interventions for both healthy and diseased populations and/or careers designed for students who wish to enter a health care-related field (that does not require licensure, certification or registry status). The department offers one undergraduate degree program; the Bachelor of Science with either the exercise science concentration or the health science concentration.
Career opportunities
Career paths include exercise physiologist, corporate fitness director, cardiopulmonary rehabilitation specialist, strength and conditioning specialist and wellness director. Additionally, the exercise science concentration prepares students for graduate study in exercise science or athletic training and offers an excellent option for those students who want to obtain the pre-requisites for post-graduate study in physical therapy, occupational therapy and medicine.  

Bachelor-level job titles
  • Exercise Physiologist 
  • Fitness and Wellness Coordinator
  • Fitness Trainers and Aerobics Instructors
  • Health Educator
  • Recreation Worker
  • Recreational Therapist
  • Sports Coach or Scout
  • Strength and Conditioning Coach
Graduate and professional level job titles
  • Chief Executive Officer
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Physical Therapist
  • Sports Medicine Doctor
Highest level of math required
  • MATH 151
Science required
  • 5+ additional science courses
Foreign language requirements
  • Yes
Additional tuition/fees
  • Yes
GPA requirements (to progress/graduate in the major)
  • 2.0
Department name:
Kinesiology and Health Sciences
Building/room location:
1020 West Grace Street, 500AC Building, Room 111
Campus (where 75% of courses are taken):
Monroe park
Phone:
(804) 828-1948
Email:
khs@vcu.edu

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Major map

Explore
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor to review your CSI self-report, start goal planning, and to discuss tutoring, electives, & degree progression.
  • Take a tour to learn about library spaces, services, & to find out how to get research help.
  • Map out a 4-year course plan in Degree Works' Student Educational Planner.
  • Attend Ready, Set, Go – Sophomore Transition Experience.  
  • Complete BIOL/Z 101 or BIOL/Z 151 with a C or better.
  • Attend all supplemental instruction sessions.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Apply to join the Honors College.
  • Get involved and meet new friends through VCU Student Government or one of over 450 student clubs and organizations.
  • Register to vote in Virginia and explore Richmond’s many museums and parks.
  • Apply to live in one of VCU's four Living-Learning Programs.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Visit a study abroad fair and complete Rams Abroad 101 online to learn about study abroad options.
  • Review the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs website and follow them on social media for programs, events, resources and other ways to engage.
  • Consider the Peace Corps Prep Program through VCU Globe to expand skills in global leadership and intercultural communication.
  • Make an appointment with the National Scholarship Office to explore study abroad and national scholarship opportunities.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Complete your Handshake profile and opt-in to industry email lists.
  • Consider applying for a federal work-study (FWS) job on- or off-campus through the VCU Career Services and Handshake.
  • Create a draft resume and have it reviewed by VCU Career Services during drop-ins.
  • Explore innovation and business/non-profit creation with the da Vinci Center.
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Explore “What Can I Do With This Major” to learn about employers in your field of study.
  • Build a LinkedIn profile with Career Services, connect to at least 10 people, and check out the VCU alumni page.
  • Join Students Today Alumni Tomorrow (STAT) to connect to VCU traditions, networking opportunities, and fellow Rams.
  • Access your free credit report and begin making responsible credit choices to prepare for your future.
  • Attend a Pre-Professional Health Interest Workshop, if you are considering a pre- professional health program (physical therapy, pre-med, etc.).

Experience
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Get familiar with the research process with the VCU Libraries Research Basics Guide. Ask questions about how to use the library.
  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor and explore minors, certificates, and skills-based value added courses.  
  • Talk to your professors about research interests, picking future classes, and strategies for success in your program.
  • Take PHIS 206 and PHIZ 206 and BIOL 205 in your second year (but not in the same semester).
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Meet with a faculty member to discuss your personal and professional interests.
  • Take a service-learning class or volunteer to address a social issue (Hands on Greater Richmond).
  • Explore peer leadership opportunities or apply for I-LEAD Connect or Alternative Spring Break.
  • Join a student organization such as the Exercise Science Club, Jacob’s Chance at VCU, Black Pre-Physical Therapy Association, or Emerging Healthcare Leaders.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Attend Diversity Scholars in Research Week.
  • Consider short-term, semester and year-long Study Abroad opportunities.
  • Get to know other VCU students and meet new friends from all over the world at a monthly Global Café.
  • Join a cultural or identity-related organization.
  • Attend OMSA Social Justice Conference.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Complete a “Gap Analysis” Strategic Plan with your academic or career advisor.
  • Gain practical experience related to career goals through internships, shadowing, part-time work, or independent skill building.
  • Create an ePortfolio to document academic/professional experiences, accomplishments, and reflections.
  • Attend Career & Internship Fairs and other professional development events. 
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Get plugged into VCULink to connect with students and alumni.
  • Conduct informational interviews or shadow someone in a field of career interest.
  • Consider who you would ask to serve as professional and academic references for future letters of recommendation.   
  • Meet with a coach at The Money Spot to set financial goals, understand student loans, and create spending plans.

Experience
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • See your academic and career advisors regularly to discuss your progress towards graduation and career planning.
  • Enhance your business, software, technology and creative skills using LinkedIn Learning.
  • Deepen your expertise at finding information in your discipline by working with your subject expert librarian & using research guides.
  • If you are considering graduate or professional school or a post-bacc certificate, make sure you are integrating the prerequisite course requirements into your degree plan appropriately.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Create a community-engaged research project.
  • Attend civic meetings, such as school board, neighborhood associations, city council, or state legislative sessions.
  • Make an appointment with the National Scholarship Office to explore post-graduate scholarship and fellowship opportunities, such as the Fulbright Student Scholarship.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department.
  • Attend a program through the Wellness Resource Center.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Actively develop your communication and interpersonal skills for future work on multidisciplinary and multicultural teams.
  • Apply to be a Diversity Ambassador with the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs.
  • Richmond is known for hosting a wide array of festivals! Learn about new cultures, food, and music by attending one of these events.
  • Complete a study abroad experience if you planned to. Consider a short-term study abroad over spring break or the summer (including HPEX 391, Global Health in Jamaica).
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Seek research opportunities to refine goals and learn the discipline required for success.
  • Apply for summer research funding through the VCU Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program.
  • Update your ePortfolio.
  • Apply for the Graduate School Mentorship Program to learn more about graduate school and the graduate student experience.
  • Attend an internship interest workshop at least a semester before you plan on taking HPEX 395.
  • Relate your site selection to your future career goals and aspirations.
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Talk to advisors, faculty, and career services about graduate school versus a job.
  • Research graduate/professional schools at least one year in advance of application deadlines. Study for and complete any admissions exams the summer before your senior year. 
  • Prepare for job offer negotiation by researching salaries, benefits, and other opportunities for flexibility.

Excel
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor a semester before your anticipated graduation to ensure all graduation requirements will be met. 
  • Take HPEX 480 in your final semester and take one of the two national certification exams as part of the course.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Serve in a leadership role on campus or as a board member of a local community organization.
  • Consider applying for a year-long service opportunity after graduation through programs like Peace Corps, Fulbright Student Scholars, Literacy Lab, Richmond Teacher Residency, Teach for America, or City Year.
  • Attend professional conferences that offer student rates or scholarships.
  • Challenge yourself through a Group Exercise class or an Outdoor Adventure Program trip or activity.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Read scholarly articles about diversity in your field.
  • Reflect on your own cultural competency, and be prepared to answer interview questions that outline how you have worked with diverse populations.
  • Attend OMSA Tunnel of Oppression.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Reflect on the experiential learning you have engaged in thus far, and discuss with current or potential mentors (peers, faculty, advisors, alumni, professionals).
  • Continue to engage in research to create more content for your ePortfolio.
  • Present your research at conference/meeting such as UROP Undergraduate Research Symposium or other conferences. 
  • Take the HPEX 395 and HPEX 495 internship courses.
  • Gain practical experience related to your career goal through internships, externships and skill building.
  • Take on a leadership role in a student organization or club or go deeper in your service opportunities.
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Complete exams, applications, or self-marketing activities for next steps after graduation.
  • Research prospective employers and create a job or graduate school search strategy at least 8 months before graduation.
  • Have a personal statement or cover letter reviewed and do a mock interview at VCU Career Services. 
  • Engage with the VCU Alumni Association at Grad Fair, Grad Bash, and by joining a VCULink Industry Network and alumni chapter as you prepare to graduate.
Visit majormaps.vcu.edu for the online version with links.
Sponsored by the Office of the Provost
Major map compass icon
2019-2020

Health, Physical Education, and Exercise Science (HPEX)

College of Humanities and Sciences

Concentration(s):
Exercise Science
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE GET REAL EXPERIENCE PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
Explore Year 1
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor to review your CSI self-report, start goal planning, and to discuss tutoring, electives, & degree progression.
  • Take a tour to learn about library spaces, services, & to find out how to get research help
  • Map out a 4-year course plan in Degree Works' Student Educational Planner.
  • Attend Ready, Set, Go – Sophomore Transition Experience.  
  • Complete BIOL/Z 101 or BIOL/Z 151 with a C or better.
  • Attend all supplemental instruction sessions.
Experience Year 2
  • Get familiar with the research process with the VCU Libraries Research Basics Guide. Ask questions about how to use the library.
  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor and explore minors, certificates, and skills-based value added courses.  
  • Talk to your professors about research interests, picking future classes, and strategies for success in your program.
  • Take PHIS 206 and PHIZ 206 and BIOL 205 in your second year (but not in the same semester).
  • Complete a “Gap Analysis” Strategic Plan with your academic or career advisor.
  • Gain practical experience related to career goals through internships, shadowing, part-time work, or independent skill building.
  • Create an ePortfolio to document academic/professional experiences, accomplishments, and reflections.
  • Attend Career & Internship Fairs and other professional development events. 
  • Get plugged into VCULink to connect with students and alumni.
  • Conduct informational interviews or shadow someone in a field of career interest.
  • Consider who you would ask to serve as professional and academic references for future letters of recommendation.   
  • Meet with a coach at The Money Spot to set financial goals, understand student loans, and create spending plans.
Year 3
  • See your academic and career advisors regularly to discuss your progress towards graduation and career planning.
  • Enhance your business, software, technology and creative skills using LinkedIn Learning
  • Deepen your expertise at finding information in your discipline by working with your subject expert librarian & using research guides
  • If you are considering graduate or professional school or a post-bacc certificate, make sure you are integrating the prerequisite course requirements into your degree plan appropriately.
  • Actively develop your communication and interpersonal skills for future work on multidisciplinary and multicultural teams.
  • Apply to be a Diversity Ambassador with the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs
  • Richmond is known for hosting a wide array of festivals! Learn about new cultures, food, and music by attending one of these events.
  • Complete a study abroad experience if you planned to. Consider a short-term study abroad over spring break or the summer (including HPEX 391, Global Health in Jamaica).
  • Talk to advisors, faculty, and career services about graduate school versus a job.
  • Research graduate/professional schools at least one year in advance of application deadlines. Study for and complete any admissions exams the summer before your senior year. 
  • Prepare for job offer negotiation by researching salaries, benefits, and other opportunities for flexibility.
Excel Year 4
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor a semester before your anticipated graduation to ensure all graduation requirements will be met. 
  • Take HPEX 480 in your final semester and take one of the two national certification exams as part of the course.
  • Read scholarly articles about diversity in your field.
  • Reflect on your own cultural competency, and be prepared to answer interview questions that outline how you have worked with diverse populations.
  • Attend OMSA Tunnel of Oppression.
  • Reflect on the experiential learning you have engaged in thus far, and discuss with current or potential mentors (peers, faculty, advisors, alumni, professionals).
  • Continue to engage in research to create more content for your ePortfolio.
  • Present your research at conference/meeting such as UROP Undergraduate Research Symposium or other conferences. 
  • Take the HPEX 395 and HPEX 495 internship courses.
  • Gain practical experience related to your career goal through internships, externships and skill building.
  • Take on a leadership role in a student organization or club or go deeper in your service opportunities.
  • Complete exams, applications, or self-marketing activities for next steps after graduation.
  • Research prospective employers and create a job or graduate school search strategy at least 8 months before graduation.
  • Have a personal statement or cover letter reviewed and do a mock interview at VCU Career Services. 
  • Engage with the VCU Alumni Association at Grad Fair, Grad Bash, and by joining a VCULink Industry Network and alumni chapter as you prepare to graduate.