Meet the College of Health Sciences

Posted: April 18, 2022 | Author: Southern Utah University | Read Time: 8 minutes

College of Health SciencesWith eight invigorating programs to choose from, including two master's programs, the College of Health Sciences can be summed up by how we eat, how we move, and how we care for ourselves and others. The College of Health Sciences at Southern Utah University is home to the Agriculture & Nutrition Sciences Department, the Kinesiology & Outdoor Recreation Department, and the Nursing Department. As a part of the college, students here learn how to enrich lives indoors or outdoors, while also gaining necessary skills for their career goals.

College of Health Sciences Departments


SUU Nursing Students get hands-on experience in a hospital

The Department of Nursing is one of SUU’s most well-known departments and is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Offering students options in pre-licensure nursing, HP (Health Professionals) to BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing), and an accelerated online program in RN (Registered Nurse) to BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing), students are sure to rise above in their education. Due to the small class sizes, a close-knit community, and amazing scholarships, the program has much to offer. The department focuses on learning-centered education so graduates have the skills and knowledge to succeed in nursing. Further, students will experience an engaging and comprehensive program that emphasizes professional excellence, ethics, caring, and safety.

The department and its professors are highly dedicated to their students. They prepare their graduates to enter nursing practice and graduate school, introduce them to cutting-edge healthcare technology, and encourage all of their students to participate in high-quality outcomes.

Agriculture & Nutrition Sciences

With eight bachelor's degrees, two associate degrees, one certificate, and two minors, the Department of Agriculture & Nutrition Sciences offers a unique learning-centered environment created purposely to help students compete on a global level in the job market and graduate school.

If you have a passion for farming, ranching, animals, plants, horses, or even the open range, one of SUU’s agriculture science degrees is a great fit for you! The department soars above others by offering students hands-on experience at the University’s 800-acre farm and 2,800-acre mountain property. The program offers a bachelor of science with six possible emphases in agribusiness, agriculture education, animal science and industries, general agriculture, natural resources/range management, and plant science and industries. Students can also earn a certificate in agriculture - livestock farm management, a minor in agriculture, or an associate degree in agriculture - livestock farm management or equine studies.

The nutrition program offers students two tracks for their bachelor’s degrees – pre-diabetic and allied health. No matter which track you choose, by the time graduation rolls around, you can expect to be fully prepared to enter a career in nutrition or be accepted into graduate school. During the four-year program, students can anticipate receiving real-world experience through a variety of courses, and involvement with nutrition and good-giving organizations, such as homeless shelters and food pantries. Additionally, the nutrition program offers a minor in human nutrition that combines nutrition with communication, chemistry, biology and physiology. No matter how you want to incorporate nutrition into your education and career, the nutrition program will help you achieve your goals.

Kinesiology & Outdoor Recreation

SUU Student rappelling down the climbing wall facilitiesThe Department of Kinesiology and Outdoor Recreation (KOR) programs include Outdoor Recreation, Exercise Science, Physical Education, Sports Conditioning and Athletic Training – all aspects of health, fitness and wellness are emphasized in some form,” says Dr. Julie Taylor, chair of the Kinesiology & Outdoor Recreation Department. “The fact that all of these programs have components that can be directly applied to each and every one of us, is part of what makes KOR extraordinary.”

The department offers two master's programs, one in athletic training and the other in sports conditioning and performance. The department also offers a limited number of teaching assistantships to their graduate students. In addition, there are three bachelor programs to choose from – exercise science, outdoor recreation in parks and tourism, and physical education – and four minors, including exercise science minor, health education minor, outdoor recreation minor, and physical education minor all of which fit a wide range of interests. The sky's the limit on what you can do in this department and Dr. Taylor agrees.

“With SUU designated as the University of the Parks, our Outdoor Recreation programs are uniquely situated to prepare students for careers in managing public lands and the tourism industry.” said Dr. Taylor.

College of Health Sciences Clubs

Utah Health Scholars gives students the opportunities needed to apply to graduate-level health care programs in dental, medical, optometry, occupational therapy, pharmacy, physician assistant, and physical therapy.

Phi Lambda Pi aims to increase vitality across campus while emphasizing mental health and academic performance. Additionally, they host exclusive events.

Students United for Reproductive Freedom (SURF) works in conjunction with Planned Parenthood and believes that every person has the right to manage his or her fertility regardless of personal circumstances.

Exercise Science Club provides members with the exploration of the field of exercise science and promotes exercise science as a way of health improvement and disease prevention.

Healthcare en Espanol helps future healthcare professionals practice medical jargon and casual conversation in Spanish, with the hopes of improving healthcare across language barriers

Bench to Bedside is an organization that has been around for over a decade and introduces students to the innovative world of healthcare technology.

Healthy T-birds Coalition is a student-led substance abuse prevention organization that promotes healthy, substance-free living.

Red Cross Ambassadors work in conjunction with the Red Cross Organization and provide students with service hours and exposure to healthcare professionals and environments.

Office of Student Involvement and Leadership organizes extracurricular activities in partnership with several other clubs to help students engage in healthy leisure activities, social interaction, and entertainment.

SUU Student Nurses Association is a student-led club geared toward nursing students to promote nursing in the surrounding area and experience leadership and service opportunities.

The Community Garden plants and maintains the community garden at SUU and strives to promote self-sufficiency, community learning, and sustainable gardening techniques.

The Agriculture Club is closely associated with the SUU Agriculture Program. In addition to providing leadership and service opportunities, it allows its members to work closely with individuals in the agriculture community.

The Range Club works closely with the agriculture club and participates in various activities to increase the understanding of range students. They participate in competitions, provide networking connections, and have an annual ice fishing trip every winter.

SUU Outdoors provides members with unlimited opportunities to try outdoor activities such as rock-climbing, kayaking, hiking, and several others. There are also chances to rent equipment and plan your outdoor adventures.

Women of the Outdoors allows women to come together and try their adventurous outdoor activities without fear of holding them back and allowing them to meet and make connections with similar women.

The Hammocking Club helps students connect through relaxing and other various hammocking activities.

SUU Athletic Clubs offer a wide range of clubs consisting of any sport or physical game you can imagine – soccer, archery, country dancing, rugby, hockey, and more.

College of Health Sciences Faculty

Dr. Dean Winward, professor of agriculture from the Agriculture & Nutrition Sciences department won the USDA Teaching Award for Food and Agricultural Sciences in 2021. To be eligible for the award, teachers had to be nominated by their colleagues. All nominees are evaluated by a committee based on their teaching abilities, use of creative teaching methods, service to students and agriculture, and overall scholarship. This award is among the many Dr. Winward has received during his 30 years of teaching.

Dr. Abigail Larson, professor of Kinesiology found her purpose in life as a college athlete. Understanding how an academic area could be applied to her passion for racing and skiing, Dr. Larson’s success boomed. All of this led her to compete on a professional ski team, race in the 2006 Winter Olympics and drove her to earn her Ph.D. in exercise and sports science. Dr. Larson’s favorite thing to teach is the application of exercise science, but nothing beats watching her students graduate each spring.

Dr. Kevin Tipton, associate professor of nursing, earned his bachelor’s and master’s in nursing and went on to earn his doctorate in human services and healthcare administration. Dr. Tipton finds nursing to be extremely rewarding. From the practice side, nurses make a difference in lives, and from the academic side, it is rewarding to watch students succeed. For him, nothing is like standing in the commencement line and seeing his students graduate.

College of Health Sciences Alumni

Socorro Herrera graduated in 2009 after getting her degree in nursing. She went on to do some amazing things like interning with the CDC in Atlanta and helping to build awareness and strategic approaches to strengthening CDC’s partnership with American Indian/Alaskan Native tribes and communities. She currently works from her home in Chandler, Arizona, as a telehealth mentor while raising her children and serving her community. She thanks SUU for giving her the confidence and leadership opportunities that helped shape who she is today.

Ashlee Humphries has become an athletic training graduate assistant while working on her master’s of science degree in athletic training at Virginia Tech. She treats over 60 student athletes and loves to be able to see the progress they make every day. Humphries is grateful for the experiences SUU gave her in overcoming adversity with confidence and for the invaluable experiences in the hands-on athletic training she received.

More Information About the College of Health Sciences

If you want to find out more about the College of Health Sciences or see the details of your current major in the college, be sure to check them out online. If you need some extra help, reach out to the Advising Center – they’re here to make sure you can get the best college experience possible. One thing is for certain, no matter which program you choose to pursue in the College of Health Sciences, you’ll be set to fly high in your education and career.

Tags: College of Health Sciences Nutrition Nursing Kinesiology and Outdoor Recreation Agriculture

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