A master's degree in wellness management combines scientific studies of how the body works with training in business management and teaching. Most schools offer this degree program as a Master of Science, but some also offer the option of a Master of Arts, in which case it might include a heavier emphasis on business and leadership principles. Students in this program gain an understanding of the importance of exercise and nutrition and learn how to deliver that message to others. By the end of the program, students are prepared to design and lead wellness programs for large groups of people. Prior to graduation, they may be required to fulfill a hands-on internship requirement and complete a research project or write a thesis.
Admission requires a bachelor's degree, sometimes with previous coursework in the healthcare field. Students must also submit MCAT or GRE scores.
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Master's Degree in Wellness Management
Graduate courses in this area typically cover all aspects of wellness, but they focus most specifically exercise and nutrition. Some example courses might include:
- Worksite Wellness Programs
- Impact of Technology and Media on Wellness
- Alternative Therapy
- Wellness Coaching
- Assessing Health in Individuals
- Nutrition for Good Health
Popular Career Options
Graduates of a master's degree program in wellness management can find themselves working on wellness initiatives within corporations, managing fitness centers, conducting outreach programs for public health departments, and more.
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
A health educator may work within a company, a public health department, or a local hospital. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), (www.bls.gov), predicts faster-than-average job growth of 12% from 2014-2024 for health educators as insurance companies, employers, and governments seek to improve health outcomes and reduce healthcare costs. As of May 2015, the median annual salary for a health educator was $51,960. Many health educators have bachelor's degrees, so holding an advanced degree can put an individual in line for promotion.
A master's degree is a standard credential for medical and health service managers, who might oversee nursing facilities, outpatient care centers, or doctors' offices, according to the BLS. The median salary for medical and health services managers was $94,500 as of May 2015. The BLS projected job growth of 17% for these managers, much faster than the average for all occupations, from 2014-2024.
Continuing Education and Certification
Some programs offer a heavy exercise component that can prepare individuals for certification exams to teach fitness to groups or become a personal trainer. Also, those who want to do research in wellness-related fields can opt to continue on with a doctoral program in wellness, health promotion or a related area. Those interested in becoming health educators can pursue designation as a Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES), which is offered by the National Commission of Health Education Credentialing Inc.
With a master's degree in wellness management, students have the interdisciplinary science and leadership training they need for career success in the industry. They are also prepared to pursue further education.