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Physical Education Teacher Education Careers

Physical Education Teacher
Duties: Teach children ages 5-18 the importance of physical fitness and how to engage in healthy behaviors throughout their lifespan. Students who complete the PETE curriculum at Upstate and pass the state's Praxis II exam are certified to teach physical education. The curriculum focuses on reflective teaching, learner centered pedagogy, performance-based assessment, commitment to diversity and professionalism. Please contact Dr. Kamla to discuss possible options.

Exercise and Sport Science Careers
The exercise and sport science degree at USC Upstate prepares students for a variety of fitness and performance-related careers. The degree includes a choice of three academic tracks that can lead to a variety of careers: exercise science, medical fitness and strength and conditioning. Students must also select a minor or add a pre-approved health sciences emphasis to enhance their basic science knowledge and prepare for graduate school. All students are required to register for either the ACSM's Health Fitness Specialist exam or the NSCA's Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist exam . Please contact Dr. Snyder to discuss possible options.

Duties: Push the boundaries of understanding in the field by asking questions and finding the answers through research and practice. E.P.’s are employed in a variety of fitness settings, including universities.
Education: B.S., M.S. or Ph.D.
Information: American College of Sports Medicine:  www.acsm.org.

Sport Nutritionist
Duties: Employ a wide range of knowledge to enhance athletic performance through optimal nutrition. Master the ins and outs of sports supplements and use them only when effective and legal.
Education: M.S., Registered Dietician.
Information: American Dietetic Association

More information: Gatorade Sports Science Institute.

Corporate Wellness
Duties: Run the corporate fitness center. Minimize the bottom line by educating employees on healthy habits and overseeing exercise programs. Education: B.S., Certification. 

Strength and Conditioning Track:

Strength and Conditioning Specialist

Duties: Maximize athletic potential by designing comprehensive, individualized conditioning programs for year-round improvements at all levels of sports. The Exercise and Sport Science degree includes a class to prepare students for the NSCA’s Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist exam, which is the most respected certification in the field. Students may apply to the NSCA for a paid internship with a registered strength coach, including our own Scott Senger.
Education: B.S., Certification.
Information: National Strength and Conditioning Association: NSCA website

Medical Fitness Track:

Fitness Professional/Personal Trainer
Duties: Get results! Design and implement cutting edge exercise programs that safely and effectively accomplish your clients’ goals. The exercise and sport science degree prepares students to take the ACSM’s Health and Fitness Specialist exam, the top certification in the field. As we shift our curriculum towards Medical Fitness to give students broader training, students may find that the Medical Fitness Association is also a good resource.
Education: B.S., Certification. Recommended minor: Business Administration.  

Cardiac Rehabilitation
Duties: Supervise exercise programs and lifestyle modification education for victims of heart disease following surgery or other treatment. An individual choosing to pursue cardiac rehabilitation usually possesses a strong background and interest in exercise physiology.
Education: B.S., M.S., Certification.
Information: CACR or the AACVPR:  www.aacvpr.org.

Health Science Emphasis (as a substitute for the required minor)

Physician Assistant
According to the AAPA Website, physician assistants, or PA's are nationally certified and state-licensed medical professionals, who practice medicine on healthcare teams with physicians and other providers. Prerequisite courses for entry into PA school can vary, but will generally fit within the normal EXSC degree plan.
Education: physician assistant graduate school.                       

Physical Therapist
Duties: Assist patients in their recovery from orthopedic injuries. The Exercise and Sport Science degree is the most common undergraduate degree for entry into physical therapy school. The strength and conditioning track is recommended, and provides great preparation.
Education: Doctor of P.T.
Information: www.apta.org.      

Contact Us

Dr. Ben Snyder
Program Coordinator
Exercise and Sports Science Director
Phone: 864-503-5528
Fax: 864-503-5574

Dr. Jim Kamla
Physical Education Teacher Education Director
Phone: 864-503-5851
Fax: 864-503-5574

School of Education
800 University Way
Spartanburg, SC 29303
Faculty/Staff Directory