B.S. Health, Wellness and Fitness

Do you enjoy exercise and a healthy lifestyle?
Degree Type Bachelor of Science
Careers and Salary Annual Employment Report
Delivery On Campus

According to U.S. News & World Report, there is a growing demand for fitness and wellness coordinators with the knowledge and skills to help people develop and sustain healthier lifestyles. UW-Stout's Bachelor of Science in Health, Wellness and Fitness (HWF) offers two concentrations to provide you with the skills and expertise to build a rewarding career as a health promotion specialist, health educator, community health workers, athletic trainer, health educator, corporate wellness coach and health researcher.

Photo of Andrew Alvarez B.S. Health, Wellness and Fitness graduate

“My education at UW-Stout allowed me to quickly start a position within my field and gave me the opportunity to help others create meaningful health improvements. My interest in wellness began after adopting changes in my own life and I’m happy that every day I’m able to help others do the same."

Andrew Alvarez,
B.S. Health, Wellness and Fitness graduate


Our program integrates hands-on experiences with coursework in nutrition, fitness, health education, business management and community health. We prepare you to help people implement their health goals, sustain life-changing behaviors and manage healthy progress.


Our multi-disciplinary approach includes two field experiences and allows you to focus your studies in a particular area of interest. Both concentrations offer hands-on experiences and business management skills that will give you a competitive edge when entering the profession or pursuing a masters degree.

The Health and Wellness Promotions concentration will prepare you to:

  • establish health education and nutrition programs within businesses, fitness organizations and community organizations.
  • consult within the health insurance industry on corporate health and wellness programs.
  • effectively address public healthcare issues, disease prevention and health issues related to the use and abuse of drugs and alcohol. 
  • prepare for Health Promotion Specialist certifications.

The Fitness Professional concentration will prepare you to:

  • understand the psychological dimensions of fitness and wellness and help individuals cope with stress and other common life adjustments throughout their lifespan.
  • manage a health and fitness organization and inspire people to make health-generating change.
  • develop a career as a head athletic trainer, resident athletic trainer or sports medicine coordinator for fitness programs, health clubs and community recreation programs. 
  • become eligible for certification as a strength and conditioning professional or as an individual and group fitness instructor.

Our unique program offers undergraduate courses and supporting programs based on curriculums developed by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) and American Council on Exercise (ACE).

Photo of Hope Steffes

“I attended UW-Stout for 4 years and LOVED it. My major was HWF which is something I had always been passionate about. After graduation, I moved to Minnesota in June & I was able to find a job within a great corporate wellness company in about 2.5 months after I graduated."

Hope Steffes,
B.S. Health, Wellness and Fitness graduate


Preventative Healthcare

The Health, Wellness and Fitness program will prepare you to enter the healthcare arena as a preventative healthcare worker. You'll become knowledgeable about the causes of the major controllable health care issues in society today as well as those we face in the future. You'll gain the skills needed to help others develop healthier lifestyles to combat major controllable health issues such as obesity and diabetes, as well as various coronary diseases and conditions.

Not only will you learn about these preventable problems, you'll also learn business management skills that will give you a competitive edge when entering the profession. The program integrates the professional areas of nutrition, fitness, health education, business procedures, management and community health to prepare you to become a prevention specialist.

Objectives & Outcomes

Program Objectives

At the completion of the Health, Wellness and Fitness program, graduates will be able to:

  1. Distinguish common motivation and barriers to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

  2. Use health, wellness and fitness assessments or technologies to inform professionals and clienteles in the development of healthy lifestyles.

  3. Evaluate factors associated with health risks and disease.

  4. Prescribe management concepts to health and wellness-related programs.

Concentration Objectives

Health and Wellness Promotions Concentration objectives include:

  1. Develop knowledge of public health issues and disease prevention.

  2. Create awareness of health issues related to the use and abuse of drugs and alcohol.

  3. Recognize the development of individual and common influences across the lifespan and be prepared to address issues of aging.

  4. Develop knowledge of common health care issues and how these issues are dealt with by individuals and families.

  5. Recognize the impact of leisure activities on families, culture and society.

  6. Recognize the individual and cultural implications of nutrition and patterns of nutrition within communities.

  7. Develop knowledge and skill to establish health education with fitness organizations and communities.

Fitness Professional Concentration objectives include:

  1. Understand the health and fitness industry.

  2. Develop knowledge and skills to manage a health and fitness organization.

  3. Develop knowledge of group and individual fitness techniques.

  4. Recognize the need for specific nutrition and hydration strategies for athletes and those wishing to become more athletic.

  5. Understand the psychological dimensions of fitness and wellness and develop the skills to help individuals cope with stress and other common life adjustments.

  6. Develop knowledge and skills to assist individuals with health and fitness throughout the lifespan.

Career Opportunities

Fitness workers, personal trainers, group exercise instructors and fitness directors are increasingly called upon to serve more complex sets of the American population. The professional arena is demanding more highly trained and knowledgeable staff than ever before. Fitness centers, medical centers and corporate health and fitness programs require staff that have knowledge of fitness, nutrition, motivational strategies, management of injuries, legalities of injured worker systems, and risk management. The world of health, wellness and fitness is changing and is requiring greater skill sets with fitness assessments, club management, nutrition assessments and fitness programs tailored to the needs of an increasingly diverse population.

Currently, the Department of Labor estimates there are 261,000 fitness workers, health promotion specialists and health educators and the job outlook is expected to increase much faster than the average for all occupations. Employment projections are expected to increase by 29 percent or greater over the 2008 to 2016 decade. Job growth is predicted due to the demands by aging baby boomers, obese children and parental concerns about fitness, reduction of physical education in schools and those seeking a better quality of life through improved health and fitness (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 4/30/2010).

HWF Advisory Board

2018 HWF Advisory Board

  • Michael Bird, Program Director
  • Kyle Steiner, Health & PE; UW-Stout
  • Mackenzie Hunter, Director- Health & Fitness Center; UW-Stout
  • Kevin Haglund, HWF Senior Student
  • Sara Karstens, Director of Education; Mayo Clinic Health System-Red Cedar
  • Laura Knudsen, Clinical Dietitian, Mayo Clinic Health System-Eau Claire
  • Bill Kryshak, Professor- Business; UW-Stout
  • Mary LaRue, Health and PE, UW-Stout
  • Susan Lew, Head Athletic Trainer; UW-Stout
  • Ann Parsons, Professor-Biology; UW-Stout
  • Bob Peters, Associate Dean; UW-Stout
  • Kerry Peterson, Professor- Food and Nutrition; UW-Stout
  • Jeremy Ries, Training Department Head, Lifetime Fitness
  • Celeste Roufs, Group Heath Cooperative
  • Steve Wozniak, YMCA Eau Claire Health and Well-Being Coordinator

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