Tag Archives: exercise science

Academic Spotlight: Exercise Science

Exercise science isn’t just about lifting weights. It’s also about helping people overcome their fears, cope with and prevent injuries, and live longer, happier lives.

The department of exercise science at PUC features programs designed to prepare students for careers in physical education and the exercise sciences, which are often combined with pre-professional programs. The department gives students the opportunity for career development in athletics, sports management, instruction, and a variety of careers in health and wellness.  

Our facilities include the fitness center, weight room, gymnasium, pool, tennis courts, and athletic fields. In recent years, students have supported our facilities and programs by utilizing student senate funds. They provided a substantial amount toward the creation of our $100,000+ fitness center. They also purchased a state-of-the-art sound system for the gymnasium, weight room equipment, and additional equipment for a climbing wall.

Programs offered:

  • B.S. in Physical Education, Teacher Education Emphasis
  • B.S. in Exercise Science
  • Minor in Physical Education

A Student’s Perspective

“Something I appreciate about the department is they do a great job of informing you about the different areas in which this major is useful. They require classes that cross over with the subjects I will also learn about in graduate school, including anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, and exercise physiology, among others. With this degree, I plan to apply to the physical therapy program at Loma Linda University. My future goal is to specialize in pediatrics and work with kids with disabilities. I think PUC’s department of exercise science is preparing me for this career by introducing me to many of the topics I will be learning in graduate school and teaches us about sports and athletic injuries I may encounter as I advance in my career.” — Amy Robles, sophomore, exercise science & honors student

Fast Facts: Exercise Science

  • Exercise science students are offered a variety of employment opportunities within the department at PUC to enhance their resumes and experience, including lifeguarding, weight room and fitness center attendants, gym supervisors, officiating and set up crews for intramurals, and athletics office assistants.
  • In 2013, the department’s intramurals program was ranked #1 in the nation by Niche.com. It is one of the largest intramural programs offered by a school of our size on the West Coast.
  • Interesting and fun classes offered by the department include care & prevention of athletic injuries, pickleball, skiing & snowboarding, kinesiology, hydro aerobics, theory & practice of officiating, fencing, research methods in sports, canoeing, ethics in sports and exercise, and more.
  • According to Payscale.com, the average salary for someone with a bachelor’s degree in exercise science is approximately $53,000, slightly more than the median household income in the U.S., which is about $51,939 across all jobs.
  • Exercise science is a growing field! About a 10 percent growth is expected in positions between now and 2026. As there has been an increased emphasis on health and wellness in recent years, it has expanded job opportunities in the field.

What You Can Do With an Exercise Science Major

Wondering what you can do with a degree in exercise science? Here are just a few places it can take you!

  • Research
  • Teaching
  • Physical therapy
  • Public health
  • Coaching
  • Fitness instructor
  • Sports medicine
  • Chiropractic medicine
  • Athletic trainer
  • Corporate wellness
  • Sporting goods retail
  • Recreational program director

Our team of admissions counselors can answer any questions you have about exercise science or any of PUC’s other programs. Call (800) 862-7080, option 2 or email admissions@puc.edu to get connected with a counselor now and start learning about all the options available to you!

#FacultyFriday: Meet Kiwon Kwak

We’d like to introduce you to Kiwon Kwak, PUC’s newest faculty member in the department of exercise science. He brings to the position his experience in personal training and a passion for physical health that spills over into everything he does. As a graduate of PUC, he’s familiar with our campus and our hill, and we are happy to welcome him back as an instructor. Welcome home, Kiwon!

Name: Kiwon Kwak
Title: Instructor of Exercise Science
Email: kikwak@puc.edu
Faculty since: 2018

Fall Quarter Classes: Elementary Weight Training, Physical Fitness, Fitness for Life, Physiology of Exercise, Intro to Kinesiology

Education: B.S. in exercise science, Pacific Union College; M.S. in kinesiology—exercise science, California Baptist University

What drew you into your current profession?

To be completely honest, I didn’t know I wanted to become a professor until fairly recently. During my time at PUC, I worked as a tutor for the Teaching & Learning Center and loved helping students learn and building relationships with students. I wanted to not only help my tutees (yes that is a real word) academically, but also mentor them through life with relationships, jobs, passions, hobbies, etc. After I graduated from PUC, I went straight into personal training and coaching, and really enjoyed educating and teaching people about fitness and health, but got frustrated with the business side of training. I still continue to train individuals in my free time, but my true passion lies in teaching future generations about strength and conditioning, exercise physiology, and health/fitness.

Why did you choose to teach at PUC?

During my senior year here, I remember my professors telling me they could see me going to grad school to do research or possibly even teach. At this point I hadn’t even thought about applying or going to school and was focused solely on training. I remember on graduation day I was talking to my exercise science professors, telling them had I applied for graduate school and wanted to go into teaching, and they had nothing but words of encouragement for me. They even jokingly said they might see me back at PUC one day—and here I am! I’m glad to be back and I hope to educate and inspire my students to pursue their passions, just as my professors at PUC did for me.

So you’re not new to the area, but what are some things that have changed between when you were a student and now?

Nothing major has changed since I’ve been here, and I appreciate that. The one thing that did surprise me was they serve real meat in the market. I never thought I’d see the day!

When you’re not in the classroom or your office, what do you enjoy doing?

I have a bunch of different hobbies. The biggest one is definitely working out. If I’m not in my office or teaching a class, I’m most likely in the weight room. I’m also a bit of a nerd, so anything related to tech, computers, gaming, and movies I really enjoy. I also love the outdoors, so as many weekends as I can, I try to go camping, white water rafting, fishing, boating, recreational shooting, and exploring nature.

So what were you doing prior to coming here to teach?

For the past three years I’ve been living in Loma Linda, running my own personal training/strength and conditioning business while attending grad school full time.

Tell us something we may be surprised to learn about you.

I was actually born in Seoul, South Korea, and moved to the U.S. when I was about five years old. I started kindergarten here so I basically grew up here, but during my childhood I grew up speaking both Korean and English. Nowadays, I mostly speak English and consider that my primary language, but I do speak Korean somewhat fluently. Unlike many Korean Americans I know, I’m not very big into Korean culture such as KPOP and Korean dramas, but I do enjoy Korean food, including Korean BBQ!