Hear from Exercise Science Graduates

What Do Truman’s Exercise Science Graduates Say About Their Truman Experience?

Exercise Science graduates are outdoor adventure guides, teaching at universities, running cardiology clinics, practicing physical therapists and physicians and directing research.

“After graduating from physical therapy school with my DPT degree and reflecting back on my years of education, I can confidently say the HES Department at Truman prepared me more than I could have imagined when I chose to attend Truman. From day one, the faculty and staff within the department made me feel like family and always made an effort to get to know me on a more personal level. The professors are extremely knowledgeable about their respective areas, and it was a privilege to be able to learn from some of the best. Truman provided excellent opportunities in undergraduate research and formal presentations as well as extracurricular activities. My experience at Truman had such a positive impact on my life; therefore, I would highly recommend this program to potential students looking for an engaging curriculum to prepare them for success in PT school.”
—Brittany (Beeler) Eagen (’13), Exercise Science


“I owe much of my career success to the outstanding faculty within the HES Department. Their personal mentorship helped me to discover my interest in clinical research, and their effective instruction gave me a notable advantage in graduate school and beyond. I currently hold a faculty position at the University of Delaware, where I teach and conduct applied biomechanics research focused on fall prevention. After graduating from Truman State, I gained experience with other kinesiology and exercise science programs. This experience allowed me to appreciate the high quality training, enthusiastic mentorship, and unique focus on student engagement that are hallmarks of the HES Department. Graduates from Truman State deservedly have an excellent reputation in our field.”
Jeremy Crenshaw, PhD, Exercise Science (’03)
Assistant Professor, Department of Kinesiology and Applied Physiology, University of Delaware
“I am currently a Robotics Account Representative | Midwest Region (MO, KS, OK). I am present in the operating room where a NAVIO Surgical System Robotics-assisted bone preparation for total knee arthroplasty is being used, normally running the monitor for the surgeon. This includes placement of the implant against the 3-D bone mesh the surgeon created of the femur and tibia. Before a surgeon can use the system on a live patient,we require them to go through a training lab on a cadaver. I or one of my coworkers will run the lab and walk through the procedure with the surgeon at least two times before we will certify them on the system. My role is clinical but when the sales team is trying to sell a system to a hospital or outpatient surgery center, I or one of my counterparts will assist by running different types of demos.”
—Nicole Kline (’16), Exercise Science/Minor in Biology
“Truman State University, and specifically the HES Department, gave me an excellent foundation and jumpstart for my career as a physical therapist. The courses at Truman provided a great practical and theoretical basis for my studies toward my Doctorate of Physical Therapy. Many of the courses I completed in PT school were essentially review courses because of the in-depth preparation that I received at Truman. I truly feel that my time in the HES  Department played a huge role in my ability to be successful in completing my PT degree.  I couldn’t have asked for a better overall undergraduate experience.”
—Taylor Elwell, Exercise Science (’11)
“The time I spent at Truman State University was some of the best years of my life. They undoubtedly prepared me for the career path I am now on, and I couldn’t have asked for a better group of faculty and friends. Truman’s HES program is second to none when it comes to the quality of classes and professors, ability to perform research, and develop real life skills to compliment the knowledge I gained in my time there.

I am currently a ski patroller at Loveland Ski Area and a white-water rafting guide on the Royal Gorge of the Arkansas River for American Adventure Expeditions. I have found a career that I love and am extremely passionate about, and Truman is responsible for opening up my eyes to the outdoor adventure industry. A great deal of responsibility, professionalism, social skills, and critical thinking are necessary in order to create a safe, fun, and unforgettable outdoor experience that most people otherwise could not have.
Truman gave me skills so far beyond my diploma that helped be highly qualified for these positions. They also allowed me to develop a view of the world and my life that many people have told me they envy and wish they would have had when they were first starting their careers.

Not a day goes by that I don’t use a skill or piece of knowledge instilled in me during my time in Kirksville, Mo. As I continue my outdoor career and change people’s lives through these experiences, I will always keep in mind one of the most important things I learned at Truman: that graduation and a diploma are only the beginning of the road to wisdom and I will forever be a student and a Bulldog!”
—Richie Schumacher, Exercise Science (’12) and MA in Leadership (’15)

Richie Schumacher

“Truman’s HES Department provided me with a fantastic platform on which I could build my knowledge and continue my education well-prepared. I had little difficulty transitioning to graduate school, especially with the curriculum background of the required writing-enhanced courses. The small class sizes at Truman allowed me to build relationships with other students in the department; ones that are now close friends and colleagues in the field of exercise physiology. The professors were outstanding and experienced, encouraging personal and professional growth in the field. These high expectations allowed me to arrive in graduate school with experience conducting research and presenting scholarly work at professional meetings. I couldn’t have asked for a better undergraduate experience than the one I received at Truman State University.”
—Kelli Dudley-Teson (’03), Exercise Science
Certified Clinical Exercise Physiologist, Ward Family Heart Center – Cardiology Clinic
Kelli - Exercise Science graduate

“The opportunities available to me as an undergraduate in Exercise Science at Truman State University were numerous. We had chances to participate in internships, join clubs relating to the field, volunteer our time to the community, and get to know our instructors personally. Many of these things can be found in other programs, but what couldn’t be duplicated was the interaction I had with my professors. Indeed, their enthusiasm was infectious and their demeanor was approachable. Throughout the curriculum, I was challenged by my instructors to approach learning with alacrity; after all, these were not assignments I was doing for them, but ones I was doing to prepare myself for the future and they made sure we understood this.

The standard the professors set was one of professionalism and caring that I still reflect on to this day. They were encouraging and patient, thoughtful and thought-provoking, and humble while confident. Throughout my continuing education, I’ve come to find that not all professors are like this, not everyone will let you into their lives, not everyone is invested in the students’ personal development. Beyond the love for the field that my professors at Truman helped kindle, I knew I had to continue my education to both learn all I could about the field, but also pay it forward and help the next generation. With their help, I was able to successfully obtain a doctorate in exercise science. Now, as I have become the professor, not a day goes by where I don’t reflect on how I can be to my students what my professors were to me.

It’s not just the big moments that matter and it’s not just the mentoring that helped me get to where I am today. It’s the small conversations in the hallways, it’s the expectations they set for us, the nods of approval, it’s the fact that they know us and they can see our potential. It’s the in-class time that sets this up, but it’s the all the other hours of the day that sets the Health and  Exercise Sciences Department at Truman apart from all the others.”
Michael Landram (’07), Exercise Science

Michael Landram, Exercise Science graduate
“Upon arriving at Truman State as a freshman, I knew I wanted to pursue my major in Exercise Science, but I had no idea what career path I wanted to take. It wasn’t until I completed my Research Methods and Exercise Physiology courses that I realized my passion for research. Having the ability to work closely with Truman faculty members on multiple research projects allowed me to apply concepts I was learning in class and explore topics of personal interest on a deeper level. Thanks to these opportunities and my supportive mentors, I connected with my current graduate mentor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Abbie Smith-Ryan (Truman ’06). I entered a research-focused graduate program with a strong foundation of experience and knowledge that put me ahead of my peers. The HES curriculum more than prepared me to be successful in graduate school, and I strongly believe that I would not be where I am at today without the excellent opportunities and support I had within the HES Department. I am currently pursuing my PhD in Human Movement Science, specializing in Exercise Physiology, having completed my MA in Exercise Science in 2016. My research focuses on exercise, nutrition, and body composition in athletic and clinical populations, with special interests in exercise and nutritional supplementation to improve body composition and metabolic health in women. I am a certified exercise physiologist (EP-C) with the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and a Certified Sports Nutrition Specialist with the International Society of Sports Nutrition (ISSN).”
— Katie Hirsch, (’16), Exercise Science
Katie, Exercise Science graduate
“I graduated from Truman in 2015 with my B.S. in Exercise Science and have been attending the University of Iowa Physical Therapy program where I will graduate in December 2017. My four years as an ES major provided invaluable experience through involvement in research with qualified and engaging faculty, coursework that prepared me for content covered in PT school, and a challenging academic atmosphere that eased the transition into graduate level coursework. I continue to be amazed at the support from the HES faculty, who truly took an interest in my goal to be a PT and the school I had hoped to attend by providing these unique opportunities that would help get me there. They interact with students on a personal level, a significant quality I believe is special to find at the university level, and these interactions will help guide my practice as a physical therapist caring for my own patients. I am profoundly thankful for my time there and view the department with the upmost respect, holding it in a special place in my heart.”
— Kirsten Maakestad (’15), Exercise Science
Kirsten, Exercise Science
“My Truman experience and the education I received as an exercise science major in the HES Department was absolutely paramount in preparing me for the post-graduate world. The unique atmosphere at Truman teaches how to effectively juggle multiple roles between academic, professional, and extracurricular experiences. The practical HES curriculum, along with the ability to gain experience in both the Athletic Department and the Student Recreation Department, prepared me for the dual MBA/MSA program at Ohio University, currently ranked the number 1 graduate program in Sport Administration. As I move on in the sports industry, I know that Truman equipped me with the skills to be a leader in the workforce.”
— Drew Fuemmeler (’14), Exercise Science: Sport Management
Drew Fuemmeler
“Majoring in exercise science at Truman was the best decision I could have made in preparing for my graduate studies and career in physical therapy. The curriculum established a solid foundation in kinesiology, nutrition, anatomy and physiology to prepare me for rigorous work in graduate school; the compassionate and knowledgeable faculty rounded out the optimal learning experience. I knew they were always available for advice or help if I needed it. The opportunity to collaborate with peers and faculty mentors on research, as well as presenting that research at a national conference, was an invaluable experience.”
— Jenny Hill (’15), Exercise Science; DPT Class of ’18
Jenny, Exercise Science graduate
“The HES Department, Truman athletics, and entire Truman community provided ample flexibility and opportunity. The student focus of the faculty and staff created an environment for creativity to thrive and students to rise. I competed for Truman, performed research, helped teach anatomy in a Human Cadaver Lab, and was involved in social/service organizations; these experiences and relationships continue to guide me to this day. Now finishing a master’s at the University of North Carolina and looking to enter a PhD in Human Thermoregulatory Physiology, I know Truman has provided the expertise to be successful at this level.”
— Nic Shea (’14), Exercise Science
Nic Shea

“When I was 16, I knew I wanted to earn a doctorate in physical therapy from Washington University in St. Louis. I was hopeful that attending Truman State University as an undergraduate, majoring in exercise science, would help me reach that goal by preparing me with a well-rounded curriculum, excellent advisors, and unique learning opportunities. The  decision to attend Truman paid off, and as a result, I did graduate with a DPT from Wash U, I am in a career I love, with an education that continues to guide my clinical practice.  The HES Department is full of competent, caring, and innovative faculty, who make the extra effort to help students reach their academic and professional potential. I enjoyed my undergraduate experience with the HES family so much that I returned as faculty to help educate future health care providers at Truman!
— Sara (Detweiler) Funk (’07), Exercise Science, Pre-PT

Sara Funk
“The Truman HES program was one of the best decisions I could have ever made. In graduate school, I realized how much more prepared I was to develop and present original thoughts than many of my peers. I was more prepared because Truman taught me to do more than accept facts at face value; I was taught to listen, ask questions, be curious, and explore my field. My success at Truman was only possible because of the relationships I was able to build with my professors and the passion they put into challenging students to receive an education that is second to none. My undergraduate career at Truman prepared me for graduate school and shaped me into the professional I am today.  My time in Kirksville has undoubtedly opened many doors to my career in collegiate sports and for that I cannot be thankful enough.”
— Camden Stockton (’11), Exercise Science, Sport Management
Camden Stockton
“I can say without hesitation that Truman and the HES department prepared me exceptionally well for life after graduation. At Truman I learned to effectively handle academics, undergraduate research, and clubs, as well as personal relationships with mentors and other professionals. As a medical scribe, I have had the opportunity to work in several hospitals in the areas of orthopedic surgery, family medicine, internal medicine, hematology, oncology, urology, and emergency medicine. Though the job was extremely demanding at times, I was prepared to perform under pressure because of the rigorous yet fulfilling time I spent in HES at Truman.”
— Jayme Reynolds (’15), Exercise Science
Jayme, Exercise