Explore your options
A variety of career paths are possible for those interested in Healthcare and Wellness. Explore your options below. Click on the links found within each description to connect to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook to dive deeper into each health-related career path and to compare and contrast options.
Fitness Instructors & Personal Trainers
Fitness instructors & personal trainers lead, teach, and motivate individuals or groups in exercise settings. Various settings include commercial fitness centers, corporate wellness programs, community-based centers, hospital-based fitness centers, strength & conditioning programs, and military wellness & recreation programs. They may work with people of all ages and skill levels. Several specialty certifications are available for fitness instructors. Educational level may vary but a minimum of a bachelor’s degree is recommended.
Exercise physiologists develop fitness and exercise programs that help patients recover from chronic diseases and improve cardiovascular function. Some exercise physiologists are self-employed while others work for hospitals and healthcare providers to monitor exercise during rehabilitation programs. A minimum of a bachelor’s degree plus certification is recommended for entry-level employment. Some may go on to earn advanced degrees aimed at clinical or human performance research.
Physical therapists help injured people improve their movement and manage their pain. Physical therapists often work as part of a team of clinicians in the rehabilitation and treatment of patients with chronic conditions, illnesses, or injuries. Physical therapy requires completion of a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree after completing a series of prerequisite courses as part of a bachelor’s degree. Entry level jobs are available as PT aides or PT assistants with associate’s or bachelor’s degrees.
Occupational therapists treat patients with illness, injury, or disability to help them regain activities of daily living. They help individuals to develop, recover, and improve these activities. Occupational therapists often work in clinics, hospitals, schools, senior care centers, and home health services. A graduate degree is required to become an occupational therapist after a bachelor’s degree has been completed.
Athletic trainers specialize in preventing, diagnosing, and treating muscle and bone injuries and illnesses. Many athletic trainers work in educational settings, such as colleges, universities, and secondary schools. Others work in hospitals, clinics, and with professional sports teams. A graduate degree is now required to become certified as an athletic trainer. Certification is also required after extensive hands-on clinical training.
Dietitians & Nutritionists
Dietitians and nutritionists specialize in the use of food and nutrition to promote health and manage health conditions. They provide individuals with guidance on what to eat to meet their health-related goals. Dietitians must have a bachelor’s degree, along with the completion of an extensive internship in order to become a registered dietitian. Some in this field focus on nutrition or food science and work in industry using their knowledge of chemistry related to food products.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/, visited June 2018.
Click to learn more about graduates’ employment outcomes.
Job Titles of Recent Graduates
- Certified Athletic Trainer
- Ergonomic Technician
- Exercise Specialist
- Fitness Coordinator
- Health Screening Technician
- Personal Trainer
- Pharmaceutical Salesperson
- Rehabilitation Technician
- Research Analyst
- Sales Analyst
- Strength & Conditioning Coach
Recent Companies Hiring
- ATI Physical Therapy
- Abbott Nutrition
- CVS Pharmacy
- Eskenazi Health
- UnitedHealth Group