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Department of Health and Exercise Science

Undergraduate Studies

About HES Undergraduate Studies

The university’s mission to advance the common good is fundamental to our work in Health and Exercise Science (HES). We strive to more fully understand the workings of the human body through exercise, to educate our community members about living healthier lives with balanced nutrition, appropriate physical activity, and better mechanisms to cope with the stresses of a challenging world, and to address health issues, including disease prevention and access to health care.

Our curriculum offers numerous opportunities to establish strong foundational knowledge and practical experience through community-based learning, inquiry-based teaching, internships, and student-faculty collaborative research. Department faculty support the mission through outstanding teaching, mentorship, intellectual inquiry, research and service to the community and profession.

of College of Health undergraduates have an experiential learning experience
of College of Health graduates employed or in graduate school within 6 months of graduation

Co-major and additional minor

Other Academic Options

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Public Health & Social Work Co-Major

With a double major in public health and social work, you will develop your understanding of two disciplinary perspectives committed to the promotion and protection of health and welfare, particularly among vulnerable and marginalized populations.

Public Health & Social Work Co-Major
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Nutrition Minor

Students will learn about nutrition and how a balanced eating pattern can support well-being and meet diverse nutritional needs across the lifespan. Available starting Fall 2021.

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Big time opportunities


Students typically complete a 100-hour internship their senior year in collaboration with their faculty advisor. Students are encouraged to think about internship sites based on career interests; the department has an internship coordinator for student questions about past student internship and sites.



Dr. Paul Mellick

Dr. Paul Mellick

Dr. Paul Mellick is an Associate Professor and department chair for the Department of Health and Exercise Science. He holds a Master of Arts from the College of St. Scholastica and a doctorate in Kinesiology from the University of North Carolina – Greensboro. Dr. Mellick’s research interests are focused on metabolic function and hormonal regulation, particularly their relationships to high-intensity exercise.

Dr. Starr Sage

Dr. Starr Sage

Starr Sage, PhD, MPH, is an Associate Professor of Public Health. Her research focuses on examining the ways in which social determinants influence health, particularly cancer outcomes. She also conducts qualitative research using a sociological lens to examine college students’ perceptions of diversity, inclusion, and difference in university settings.

Prof. Amber Roy

Amber Roy

Amber Roy is Clinical Faculty in the Department of Health and Exercise Science. She holds a B.S. in Dietetics and an M.S. in Food Science and Technology from Iowa State University and is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN). Amber is passionate about using culturally affirming, transparent and inclusive teaching and mentoring strategies in her work.

Prof. Amber Roy