Why Get a HPE degree?

swimming derekNational trends toward the allied health professions, fitness and wellness, physical rehabilitation, recreation, and related disciplines have opened an extensive area of opportunity for today’s health and physical education graduates. Our program is small, thereby fostering strong student-faculty relationships and personalized learning.

Students choose a HPE degree for various reasons, including:

  • Becoming a teacher:  The teacher preparation program prepares students for careers in health and physical education.  Minnesota licensed HPE teachers will be able to teach grades K-12. 

"I want a HPE degree so I can spread a joy for fitness through generations of kids to come." Michael G. '18

"Teaching is the last defense against poor parenting". I appreciate this because it encourages me to be the best person I can be to be an example for those who need one the most.  Isaac L. ‘18

  • Sports, coaching, and/or recreation leadership:  Gustavus offers a coaching minor that blends nicely into the HPE program.  Pursuing careers as an athletic director is also an option.  An HPE graduate can coordinate a myriad of activities at a sports or recreation center, as well as in a municipal recreation program.

“I chose to pursue a degree in HPE because there isn't anything I am more passionate about then health, fitness, & well-being. Teaching Health & Physical Education allows me to engage in those passions on a daily basis & inspire my future students to do the same.”  Krystal B. ‘16

"My purpose to pursue a career in Physical & Health Education and coaching is to have a positive daily impact and influence on the lives of young men and women. There's not a better platform to have an impact on the youth than in the school system and competitive field.  Go Gusties!"  Samuel L. '16

  • maisonBecoming a trainer:  Beyond the training required in both individual and team sports, physical education graduates may work as trainers in private gyms, aerobic centers, recreation centers and many other establishments. Education in movement study provides invaluable aid to trainees in any locale.

  • Graduate School:  A HPE graduate might decide to pursue a masters degree, a PhD, or look at the allied health professions.  Focus of study could include physical therapy, occupational therapy, sport sociology, sport psychology, sport management, sport medicine, sport pedagogy, etc.  Gustavus prepares students for graduate school with a rigorous liberal arts education.

  • Research:  A health and physical education degree (especially at the graduate level) can launch a research career. This careertrack appears most often in the field of kinesiology, or study of human movement.Andy

  • Other Specialties:  These include activities director, camp director, nutrition specialist, spa/health club manager, corporate fitness instructor, and many more.