Our Students

Through her passion for fitness, one student finds ways to help others stay healthy

Chelsey Pagana is getting ready for a life focused on fitness and helping others stay healthy with help from opportunities in the College of Health and Human Development and at Penn State.

Chelsey has many interests, including choir and volunteering with THON, but her main passion is exercise. In high school she played soccer and basketball, and in college she continues those sports and also boxes and skis. As a student in the Fitness Studies option of Kinesiology, Chelsey is finding ways to help others stay fit and healthy.

Since she was a first-year student, Chelsey has been instructing fitness courses offered to Penn State students. She has the chance to teach many types of classes, including cycling, water aerobics, kickboxing, and muscle conditioning. She prepared for this role by taking a general physical activity class that taught the fundamentals of aerobic exercise and how to lead participants in a safe manner.

“I’ve always been outgoing, but this opportunity is great,” she says. “It’s a chance for me to motivate and help others.”

Chelsey benefits from all of her Kinesiology courses, but she especially liked a course on human anatomy. “We learned about the major muscle groups, and now I can use that knowledge to teach people in my fitness classes more about how their muscles work.”

Another course she enjoyed and found very valuable was a Kinesiology course on fitness appraisal. There, she learned how to assess different levels of fitness to better help people she instructs. “I know I’ll be able to utilize knowledge from that class in the future,” she says.

Chelsey’s experience at Penn State is preparing her for a variety of careers related to fitness and health or for further study at the graduate level. “It’s a top-notch college. There are so many fields you can go into,” she says.