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Learn about our Exercise program

Exercise Science: Performance Track Overview

Performance Track: Focus on Fitness. Prepare for in-demand fields of strength and conditioning, personal training, weight loss management and performance coaching.

The Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science offers a comprehensive curriculum grounded in scientific principles and their practical application to maintaining health through fitness and nutrition, training and performance, rehabilitation and health and wellness.

The Exercise Science program supports preparation for academic advancement into graduate health professions and other related areas such as biomechanics, exercise psychology, sports psychology and athletic training. Students interested in entering the work force upon graduating with the B.S. degree in Exercise Science will also be prepared to apply for positions within the wellness and fitness industry.

All Exercise Science students take the same core curriculum and specialize in one area of concentration. Both tracks prepare students for certifications such as the ACSM Health and Fitness Specialist (HFS) and the NSCA Certified and Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) exams.

Mercy Exercise Science student

Career Opportunities

Entry to mid-level positions in the fitness industry for training and strength coaching, and managerial, directorial or corporate wellness roles. 

Entry-level positions in the health care field as an exercise physiologist in cardiac rehabilitation or a clinical exercise specialist. 

Students will have the opportunity to complete two semester-long internships. This allows graduates to make meaningful connections between classroom learning and practical application. 

13% Growth

Career Outcomes
Fitness trainer jobs
to grow 13% by 2028.

$59K Salary

Average Pay
For fitness trainers  
in the New York region.

120 Credits 

Total Credits to Earn Your Degree 
Classes in emergent care, kinesiology
human anatomy & physiology

What We Offer
The Mercy Advantage

  • State-of-the-art exercise science suite 
  • Work with our Division II athletic teams to maximize performance
  • National accreditations CAAHEP & NSCA
  • Worth with institutions in NYC & Westchester
  • Curriculum contains pre-requisites for physical therapy doctorate program
  • Active Exercise Science student-run club
Mercy Alum Greg Muy '19

Returns as Employer at Career Fair

Meet Astrid Mel, Program Director, Exercise Science

Learn about her story and explore Exercise Science at Mercy College.

From Mercy College Student Life

Home Workouts series

Program Outcomes

  • Synthesize and apply knowledge of core concepts from biological, physical, health, and behavioral sciences as a foundation for practice in exercise science

  • Act in accordance with professional and ethical standards in the field of exercise science

  • Assess health status, conduct fitness testing, and interpret results based on scientific evidence

  • Utilize evidence to design, administer, and modify appropriate exercise programs for normal and at-risk populations

  • Design and implement behavior modifications to promote and sustain a healthy lifestyle

  • Communicate information clearly in written and oral format to clients, colleagues, and community agencies

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the benefits of obtaining a BS in Exercise Science?

A BS in Exercise Science is an excellent choice if you are interested in having a degree that allows you to directly enter the workforce upon graduation. If you plan to pursue graduate education, the program will prepare you for both master's and doctorate level work as our BS in Exercise Science includes graduate program prerequisite courses for occupational therapy, physical therapy and exercise physiology to name a few. (Depending on the area of emphasis of the graduate program you choose, additional courses may be required.)

How is Mercy's program unique?

Mercy College is known for flexible scheduling and small class size. Our small class size facilitates a close relationship among the students and between students and faculty. Laboratory sections are taught by the professors who teach the lectures and not by graduate students. This arrangement enables faculty to closely coordinate the lecture and laboratory components of our courses and enables students to learn laboratory skills from experienced professionals.

Is the schedule flexible?

Very. You can take classes as a part-time or full-time student, at various times including evenings and weekends.

How long does earning a degree take?

Full-time students can complete the 120-credit degree program in four years.

I've taken classes at another college. Can I transfer credit to complete the BS?

Yes. Acceptance of transfer credits is determined by Admissions. They consult with any graduate program to which you intend to apply. To be eligible for a BS in Exercise Science, which is a 120-credit degree, students must complete a minimum of 30 undergraduate credits at Mercy College. Mercy may transfer up to 90 undergraduate credits from a 4-year college and up to 75 credits from a 2-year community college.

Are department faculty available for academic advising?

Yes, faculty are always ready to help students with questions about what courses to take, the sequencing of courses, and career opportunities, including internships and cooperative education.

Should I finish the general education requirements before starting my major?

No! Because of the rigor of the program a combination of general education courses and major-level courses is recommended. Students should contact the Program Coordinator as early as possible to plan their course of study.

Program Details & Curriculum

Curriculum Overview

General Education Requirements: 60 Credits
Major Concentration: Exercise Science: 49 Credits
Open Electives: 11 Credits

Total: 120 Credits

Alternative Mercy Exercise Science Programs

Exercise Science Program Accredited

The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) upon recommendation of Committee on Accreditation for Exercise Sciences (CoAES) awarded initial accreditation to the Mercy College Exercise Science program on March 17, 2017.

We are very proud and excited to be the 1st College in the Westchester/New York Metropolitan area and 2nd in New York State to receive full accreditation for our Exercise Science Program. We are also the only Exercise Science Program in New York State accredited by CAAHEP and recognized by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) as an Education Recognition Program (ERP).

These prestigious distinctions recognize the high quality of our Exercise Science Program and its faculty.

Cycling and Parkinson’s Disease Research Grant

Nannette Hyland PT, PhD Program Director of the Physical Therapy program and Astrid Mel PhD, Program Director of the Exercise Science program were award $18,000 from theRainwater Charitable Foundation to study the impact of an indoor cycling protocol in reducing Parkinson’s symptoms. This project will involve graduate DPT students to assist with data collection. The study will be performed at ClubFit in Briarcliff, NY over the next year. 

The Nocebo Effect

"Sticks and stones may break my bones, and the words my clinician uses can also hurt me. Sounds crazy, but it's not. Whether you're into pain science or not, we're all probably familiar with the placebo effect to some extent . . . the placebo response isn't some mystical phenomenon, we can explain why it's happening . . ."

Click here to read more of this Exercise Science student's article on the nocebo effect.

Nociception: More Than Just Pain

"There seems to be a lot of confusion with regard to nociception and pain. These two are constantly used synonymously when, in reality, they are different than one another. To explain this, we need to start from the beginning and explain what nociception is and how it works . . . "

Click here to read more of this Exercise Student's article on nociception.