There are several career options for you to consider in sports and health sciences. The following options are only a sampling of the varying career directions you can consider. Keep in mind the path you choose may require additional experience, credentials, and/or other qualifications beyond obtaining a degree in sports and health sciences.
Sample job titles:
- Aerobics Instructor
- Campus Recreation Manager
- Community Health Worker
- Fitness Instructor
- Health Educator
- Parks & Recreation Manager
- Personal Trainer
- Physical Education Teacher
- Sports Performance Coach
- Strength & Conditioning Coach
- Wellness Coordinator
Your ideal career path may or may not appear in the list above; continue exploring options until you find a path that aligns with your individual interests and professional goals. In addition, make it a priority to learn as much as possible about your desired career path. The more you know about your target job, the better you can plan and prepare yourself for success.
The following career libraries can help you continue your research:
A great way to learn more about a career path in sports and health sciences is to conduct an informational interview with someone who works in your desired job role. An informational interview can provide unique insight into the daily functions, responsibilities, joys, and challenges of that individual's position. It can also provide an opportunity to build your professional network and learn more about industry employers and work settings.
For information on how to conduct an informational interview, watch the Candid Career video below:
While not required for all sports-related positions, some employers may prefer to hire candidates that possess an industry certification. It is important that you research your desired job role thoroughly to identify whether an industry certification may be required for your target position.
There are several professional certifications available to explore within the sports and health sciences field. Consider all your options to determine which certification may best suit your career goals and interests. Below are just a few organizations that offer certifications related to sports and health sciences:
- American Council on Exercise (ACE)
- International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA)
- National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM)
- National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA)
Employers gravitate toward hiring candidates who possess relevant, real-world experiences that complement their education. If you have limited experience in your target functional area, there are several ways you can gain relevant new skills and experiences. To brainstorm additional ideas, schedule an appointment with your career coach.
Internship opportunities can be found at a variety of companies and organizations across the country. While many opportunities are posted online, others can only be discovered by reaching out to an organization directly.
Below are a few ideas on where you can start your internship search:
- Community health organizations
- Fitness centers
- Local community health or sports programs
- Sports facilities
*Please note that while Career Services can help you prepare for the internship application process, the university does not coordinate internships or provide placement services.
Explore volunteer opportunities in your local community, including local community centers, youth clubs, non-profit organizations, veteran rehabilitation centers, and sports fundraising events.
If you are currently employed, consider asking your employer about opportunities to volunteer on wellness committees or initiatives at work.
National & Community Service
Consider looking into sports and health related service opportunities through the Corporation for National & Community Service and/or AmeriCorps Network Programs.
Building meaningful connections with employers, recruiters, mentors, and industry professionals can help you learn more about a position, field, or specialty area. Connections can also aid you during a future job search. Below are ways you can begin establishing new professional relationships.
APUS Virtual Career Fairs
Career Services offers industry-specific virtual career fairs throughout the year, providing students and alumni with opportunities to connect with employers and recruiters. Click here to view our Virtual Career Fairs page in your ecampus and discover upcoming events.
Past participating VCF employers have included*:
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- Crunch Fitness
- Equinox Fitness
*Please note that past employer participation does not guarantee future employer VCF participation. Please visit our ecampus Virtual Careers Fair page for upcoming event information.
APUS Mentoring Program
Receive coaching, motivation, and guidance from a university mentor. Visit the university's mentoring page to learn more!
Joining a professional organization offers a variety of career and professional development benefits, including the opportunity to network at conferences and other events. There are several organizations within the sports and health sciences field; explore all your options to find the best fit for you.
Examples of relevant professional organizations include:
- The American Kinesiotherapy Association (AKTA)
- IDEA Health and Fitness Association
- National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS)
- National Associate for Health and Fitness (NAHF)
- National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)
- National Exercise and Sports Trainers Association (NESTA)
- National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA)
Build your network, connect with employers, and join LinkedIn groups to engage in professional discussions. Examples of LinkedIn groups include:
The following articles offer additional advice on exploring careers in sports and health sciences: