UNCG’s Online Doctor of Education in Kinesiology program has a mission: to develop action-oriented leaders in the field. Some of the program’s most “action-oriented” students work with current or former members of the U.S. military. (UNCG is nationally recognized for its support of students who are veterans; the university has been named a “Military Friendly School” for 5 years in a row.) We caught up with several current students to see how the program helps them in their work.
Jason Suby, an assistant professor and Certified Athletic Trainer at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, says the program has helped him become a better communicator.
“The most beneficial experience thus far has been writing, writing often, and beginning to write well,” he says. “Being able to articulate in front of your peers and influence others through writing is a valuable tool that continues to be sharpened by this experience.”
Eric Tucker is a social worker whose clients include military veterans and retired police officers. He says the program has helped him develop skills to facilitate social justice as a leader and practitioner.
“The EdD in Kinesiology program has helped me primarily in the areas of leadership, clinical and policy practice, and program development,” he says. “I have been able to broaden my understanding of health and wellness, identify strategies to solve problems in my field, and develop (and evaluate) programs that affect marginalized populations.”
Steve Mannino works at the U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School, but as a Human Performance Program Coordinator. Mannino says he has been able to incorporate several aspects of the program into his job.
“Learning about policy and procedures has come in very handy,” he says. “Also, as a person who was not formally trained as a teacher, I find that classes that cover educational strategies have helped my educational methods evolve.”
Helping Those Who Serve
Jill Wierzba works with soldiers at one of the largest military medical installations in the world. She says the Kinesiology program has helped her in her job, which includes teaching and coaching mental skills to complement soldiers’ training.
“The Doctor of Education in Kinesiology program has helped me gain a deeper insight and application of teaching strategies, overall wellness and health concepts, and a generally broader perspective of how to best assist our service men and women to be at their best when it matters most,” she says.
UNCG’s online Doctor of Education in Kinesiology is an interdisciplinary degree program for practicing professionals with at least three years of experience. The program is focused on scholarship and professional practice in leadership, advocacy, and teaching. Students graduate in four years with all coursework completed online.