Our Students

Janet Austin

As a pre-physical therapy student, Janet Austin was looking for a degree that allowed her to gain a better understanding of health and the human body.

How did you become interested in exercise science as your field of study?

I became interested in exercise science when I was in high school because I really enjoyed sports and science classes. As I entered deeper into the exercise science program, I decided that I wanted to pursue my bachelor’s degree because the classes really intrigued me, and I wanted to learn more about health and the human body. Being able to learn about all the benefits that exercise has on overall health and wellness has made me more aware, and has inspired me to want to help other people achieve the same goals and live healthier lives.

Why did you choose UB?

I chose UB because I loved how the exercise science program is constructed. I felt as though it really prepares you for a variety of career options, in my case physical therapy. In addition to that, the price of a SUNY school made it an even easier decision to come here. I am from downstate New York, so being able to explore and live in the Buffalo area was a nice change from home.

Tell us more about your experience in the exercise science program.

The program course work is quite diverse and I really enjoy that.  The courses range from topics about injury, aging and general exercise. Not only are the topics diverse, but they are challenging which pushes students to ask questions and dig deeper about what they are learning.

As for research, I was able to be a part of Dr. Hostler’s study on the effect of lower extremity and whole body exercises on VO2 Max arterial stiffness and central blood pressure. The best part about my involvement is that I am the actual subject in the study! So, not only am I an active study participant, but I am also writing the background research for the publication.  The program has provided me a tremendous amount of opportunity to learn both in and out of the classroom.

What do you enjoy the most about the exercise science program?

I enjoy how friendly and passionate all the faculty and staff are in the department. They make the courses we take extremely interesting and encourage all of us to use our knowledge outside the classroom by research or practicum. In addition to that, being part of a small class size has allowed me to become closer with the other students in the program and really made my college experience more enjoyable.             

How does receiving a degree from UB SPHHP set you apart?

Receiving a degree from UB SPHHP sets me apart because I have the opportunity to take courses that other schools don’t offer. Gross anatomy is a great example.  Being able to take that course and have that experience really expanded my understanding of the human body and prepared me for the rest of the upper division program. Also, getting the opportunity to work on research with professors has given me relevant experience to move forward with my career path.