Kinesiology Department Celebrates First Graduating Class

June 10. 2024 | 2-3 min read

This spring, 11 students made Florida College history as the Kinesiology Department’s inaugural graduating class. Now in its third year, the growing program teaches students about human movement and its effect on health, well-being and quality of life, and opens the door to careers in health and human performance through three specializations: Exercise Science, Pre-Occupational Therapy, and Pre-Physical Therapy.

Dr. Jessica Miles, Chair of the Kinesiology Program, said about the first cohort who all received Bachelor of Science degrees in Kinesiology, “While the program only started three years ago, these 11 hard working and ambitious students walked across the stage, accepted their diplomas, and left FC with bright futures ahead,” she said. “They will do great things no matter where their earthly paths lead them.”

Core classes for Kinesiology majors, including 16 juniors in the class of 2025 cohort, are Exercise Physiology, Biomechanics, Principles of Strength and Conditioning, and Athletic Injuries and Care. Additionally, there are specialized courses tailored to the interests of each cohort. Students also graduate with real-world experience courtesy of internships and participation in FC’s Employee Wellness Challenge. Facilitated through the Kinesiology Department, the program allows students to partner with faculty and staff to establish wellness goals and perform functional movement screenings to analyze mobility.

The Class of 2024 represents a mix of career paths, with some going directly into the workforce and others into graduate programs for athletic training, occupational therapy and physical therapy. Graduates include Halle Bone (Pre-OT), Leah Brown (Pre-PT), Victoria daFonseca (Exercise Science), Nolan Frazier (Pre-PT), Marin Klapuh (Pre-PT), Ashleigh Leverette  (Pre-PT), Matthew Manzi (Pre-PT), Jakob Paz (Exercise Science), Rebecca Rinehart (Exercise Science), Yaritza Vasquez (Pre-PT), and Abigail Wright (Pre-OT).

Miles joins her colleagues in praising students for their tenacity and willingness to work hard.

“It takes a special group to be the first to graduate from any program of higher education, and this cohort is special,” she said, noting their eagerness to tackle rigorous courses, desire to serve others and ability to maintain a positive attitude – all while shining their lights.

“While these students may be physically leaving campus, the impact they have made will forever be in the hearts of those whose paths they’ve crossed,” she said. “May God bless them in all they put their hands to.”