What It’s Like to Get a Sport and Fitness Studies Degree from WPU

Oct 19, 2021

Most people who pursue a career in the health and wellness industry want to share their passion for sports and fitness with others. To be successful, though, they need a well-rounded knowledge of health, wellness, exercise, and general sports information. Students in the Sport and Fitness Studies degree program at William Peace University, will not only gain that critical in-depth knowledge of wellness and the sports industry but will also graduate with practical experience that leaves them fully prepared to start their career.

Although experts report thousands of new fitness-related job openings each year, a bachelor’s degree from WPU’s newest sports studies major will put you head and shoulders above your non-WPU peers and will open up a wide range of career opportunities. You will be qualified for careers at corporate, private, and community fitness centers; within elementary and secondary schools; at hospitals, medical clinics and elder care settings; and, even as a freelance fitness consultant or personal trainer. You will also have the skills and ability to promote the benefits of a healthy lifestyle to clients with different wellness goals: healthy athletes looking to get stronger and faster, out-of-shape adults wanting to improve their health, or patients rehabilitating after an illness or injury.

Coursework and Classroom Environment for Sport and Fitness Studies

The WPU Sport and Fitness Studies (SFS) major is a 120-credit hour program geared toward traditional undergraduate students who live on campus in Raleigh, NC and are dedicated to preparing for a successful career and life. Classes are presented by competent, engaging staff who are experienced in the field, including WPU’s own head strength & conditioning coach. WPU professors don’t just teach classes — they provide an interactive learning environment using innovative teaching techniques that encourage participation and fun. Classes are small, the typical WPU student to faculty ratio is 12:1, and usually involve hands-on learning and physical activity. WPU believes the best way to learn is by doing!

There are similarities between the Exercise and Sport Science (ESS) bachelor of science (B.S.) degree program and the Sport and Fitness Studies (SFS) bachelor of arts (B.A.) program. You will notice that some of the classes you take in the SFS program are also required for the exercise and sport science program. However, while the ESS curriculum is science-heavy, including classes in chemistry, epidemiology, and kinesiology, giving students a comprehensive knowledge of the human body, students in the sport and fitness track gain a broader knowledge of the sport and fitness industry.

You will have specialized courses on coaching, fitness and athletic training, personal training, and strength and conditioning, and you will have more flexibility in the general elective courses you take. Focused SFS classes include exercise testing and prescription, lifetime fitness and wellness, principles of strength and conditioning, and sport coaching, as well as nutrition, sport psychology.

WPU Students Learn by Immersion

WPU has a goal to ensure that Sport and Fitness Studies students graduate with “an in-depth knowledge and holistic understanding of the human body.” You can’t just learn this by sitting in a desk and listening to lectures, so WPU supplements classroom education with “learning-by-immersion.”

William Peace University is proud to be named as one of the nation’s Colleges of Distinction for 2021-2022. WPU was recognized for its “commitment to engaged, immersive, hands-on education,” and much of the success is given to the incredible faculty who focus on the students, beginning with their first year of enrollment. What this means for you is an exciting education experience.

Students take what they learn in the classroom and apply it firsthand. You may first be given instruction on how to properly perform a squat, but you will soon be in the weight room doing a few yourself. Instruction could mean taking blood pressure, weightlifting, playing basketball, hitting the golf links, or creating a workout routine for a football player. WPU students will work up a sweat and may even find themselves getting stronger and living a healthier lifestyle.

Students have access to WPU’s varied fitness centers, including Hermann Athletic Center, home to the men’s and women’s basketball teams and women’s volleyball team; Pacer Performance Center featuring CrossFit space, a two-lane turf track, and Rogue fitness equipment; and The Stable with batting cages, pitching mounds, and driving ranges. Other facilities where students will learn sport studies include the USA Baseball National Training Complex, and WakeMed Soccer Park, home to North Carolina Courage of the National Women’s Soccer League.

Internships and Certification Prepare Students for the Real World

Did you know that 100% of WPU students complete an internship? SFS students will gain hands-on experience with certified physical trainers, physical therapists, and have the opportunity to get an inside look at sports management from many of the sports teams and organizations that call the Triangle area home, like the Durham Bulls and the Hurricanes.

WPU ensures that everyone graduates with solid hands-on work experience and that SFS graduates have appropriate fitness certifications to get started immediately in a career. Included as part of the SFS major, students can earn up to three professional certifications in Personal Training, Sport Coaching, and Strength & Conditioning. All the preparation to complete the certifications is included within the SFS curriculum.

Find Out More About WPU’s Sport and Fitness Studies Today

Learn the principles of how to positively impact the lives of others with a Sport and Fitness Studies bachelor’s degree from William Peace University, and be ready for the workforce. WPU reports that 96% of their 2019 graduates either gained employment or continued their education.

To find out more about WPU’s SFS program, visit Sport and Fitness Studies or contact an admissions counselor today. We offer financial aid and scholarships for students in SFS as well as our other sport studies programs.

Give Courageously to Peace

Thanks to the generosity of William Peace University supporters, current and future WPU students have access to the resources needed to learn through immersive experiences, build upon their courage and develop the confidence needed to turn passion into purpose.
Roses float in the campus fountain after an alumni event.
a student uses a laptop on a green bench at William Peace University

Give Now

Support future Pacer success. 


Become a Corporate Partner

Find out how your organization can collaborate with Peace.


Whether you’re hoping to attend WPU or hosting an event, you’re welcome to visit WPU! 

Wedding at WPU
Phantom in downtown Raleigh

Conferences and Events

Host your conference, event, or wedding at WPU.

Location and Directions

Get directions, our address, a campus map, and hotel discount information.


Learn about WPU and all it has to offer so you can guide your students to the best fit for their next step. 

Admissions Info

Meet and connect with our Admissions team.

Schedule a Visit

Learn about our processes and schedule a visit.


Our success as an institution has always been rooted in the strength of our community. As an integral part of that community, we invite alumni to stay informed and connected. 

Alumni outside at WPU
Roses float in the campus fountain after an alumni event.
Building at WPU

Get Involved

Stay connected to Peace.


Contribute to the success of future Pacers.

General Info

Read about alumni benefits.


Families are an integral part of a student’s path to WPU. Find answers to your questions here. 

Two WPU students work together on a project during class

Student Success: Why Choose WPU?

Learn about the value of an education at WPU.

Billing and Due Dates

Questions about your student’s enrollment or billing? Start here.

Current Students

Already a Pacer? Here’s your quick path to information, links, and other useful stuff.

Group of students talking
Students high-fiving each other

Current Students

Missing something? Can’t find a link? Start here.

Current Parents and Families

Is your student a Pacer? Here’s where to get information and contacts.

Future Students

Welcome to William Peace University! We offer programs for both traditional undergraduate students and online/hybrid classes through our School of Professional Studies. Find your path to WPU here.

Three WPU students walk through a brick archway on campus.
Three students discuss their work during class.
Older gentleman at a computer

First Time in College

Your WPU education will help you build practical skills for your future.

Transfer Students

Transfer up to 90 credit hours from any institution. 

Working Professionals

Enhance your existing career.

A WPU student works on a video game in the new esports and gaming lab on campus.
Woman in army green typing at computer
Two female international students


If you previously attended WPU and are ready to return, start here. 


Learn more about how to apply the GI bill.

International Students

Find out how to attend WPU.


WPU has a long history as one of the city’s oldest universities. Find out more about our institution in the heart of downtown Raleigh. 

2023 Student Showcase
Staff Pumpkin Painting


Through 160 years, William Peace University has evolved to meet the changing needs of the students we serve.


William Peace University is a small, private institution located in downtown Raleigh, NC.

Work at WPU

Join our team and see why William Peace University was voted one of the Triangle’s Best Places to Work!

DEI Staff
Design Rendering of WPU

Contact Us

Contact the University

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Learn about DEI at WPU.

Mission, Vision, and Values

Learn about WPU core tenets. 

Student Life

Whether you want to know more about on-campus events or see our residence halls, get a sense of what life is like as a student at WPU.

WPU Student on bouncy slide
A WPU student sits with his friends while eating at Belk dining hall.
WPU Safety Officer

Clubs, Activities and Events

Discover what’s fun at WPU.

Housing & Dining

When people say that WPU “feels like home,” we think that’s the ultimate compliment.

Safety & Security

The Office of Public Safety is committed to providing a community-friendly approach to enhancing campus safety for students, faculty and staff.

Dining room at Peace
A WPU student sits with his friends while eating at Belk dining hall.
Health and wellness at WPU


Cheer on your Pacers at their next home game.

Student Support Services

Find out how the WPU team supports the whole you.

Health and Wellness

Learn about physical and mental health services available to students.


WPU offers a mix of more than 30 degree programs and additional minors. Our courses are four credit hours each, and every course features immersive learning experiences.

A student in WPU's online School of Professional Studies works on her homework.
2023 Internship Showcase

Immersive Learning

Find out about WPU’s unique approach to learning.

Center for Student Success

Peer tutoring, a first-year success program, and an internship program are just part of why Pacers succeed. 


Start here to find out how to apply, visit, and learn more about WPU.

Before you apply:

Admissions team
students walking on campus
A student reviews scholarship and payment information in the financial aid office.

Connect with an Admission Couneslor

They’ll be your guide through the process.

Visit Campus

Get a feel for campus life.

Understand Costs

Find out about Financial aid and other options to pay for college.