It’s a fair bet that many of us who are fitness-conscious have, at times, considered a career in health and wellness. It is also a fair bet that many of us have encountered “professionals” who lack the knowledge or the people skills to be a successful trainer.
“You are in the business of people,” says Bryan University’s Health & Wellness Department Chair, Tara Homburg. “Ask any of our graduates, or any successful trainer and they are going to say that you must keep the person in personal training.” Homburg herself knows this quite well. With a background in athletic coaching, personal training, corporate training, and a history of achieving personal fitness goals, she is aware of the driving factors that make a trainer successful.
Bryan University a small, private institution in Springfield has been providing career skills to students since 1982. Most students enroll in associate of applied science degrees in areas such as healthcare or business. The university also offers two Bachelor of Science degrees and a Master of Business Administration. The advent of the health & wellness programs signaled a growing trend in people finding careers in fitness. “We offer a 40-week Personal Trainer certificate and an Exercise Specialist Associate of Applied Science degree that is just 70 weeks,” says Admissions Manager, Mel Cornelius. “The great things about our programs include the fact that classes are just two days or nights per week but students can also complete either program 100% online.” Both programs are taught by industry experts who have educational and experiential backgrounds as trainers. The university prides itself on relevant training and prepares students to sit for national certification upon graduation. As an American Council on Exercise (ACE) education partner, the university bases much of its curriculum on their rigorous certification exam. “We want our students to be proficient in the proper technique of personal training, but also how to communicate effectively with clients and how to build and manage their business,” says Homburg.
The university often sees students enroll who work fulltime but want a change. “It’s exciting when you see a new student who is able to get an education and still work fulltime and take care of their families,” says Cornelius. “We want them to build their business while in school so their transition to this new career starts as soon as possible.” Transition is something Homburg says can often occur, but not just in a person’s career. “We have gym rats, former athletes, former military, and those who have a passion for fitness who enroll. But, sometimes we see the person enroll who has their own fitness journey in mind and that transition is something that is incredible to see,” says Homburg. The program is offered at Bryan University’s Springfield campus and nationwide via their online learning platform. Financial aid is available for those who qualify, plus the institution offers a variety of tuition discounts and grants to some employers and under other conditions. To learn more visit here.
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