Student & Alumni Spotlights

Doctoral Student - Elliott A


Elliott was recently awarded the Wayne Sinning Memorial Scholarship.  He is a doctoral student working with Dr. Jajtner.  He teaches Exercise Physiology (EXSC45080) laboratories. 

Caguas, Puerto Rico

Why did you choose Kent State University?
I chose Kent State to work with Dr. Jajtner. I met Dr. Jajtner when he was a Ph.D student at [University of Central Florida] UCF and I was an undergraduate student in the exercise science program at the time. We got along great and were interested in similar research. When I visited Kent State I really liked the campus and the town. It felt like a nice place to call home.

What do you plan to do after you graduate with your doctorate?
I enjoy teaching at the collegiate level and mentoring young researchers. Therefore, I hope to secure a tenure-track position upon graduation where I can continue teaching exercise science and mentoring young scientists.


Undergraduate  Student - Tricia H

Tricia was recently awarded the Outstanding Undergraduate Scholar Award from the American Kinesiology Association.  She is graduating in May 2019 with her B.S. in Exercise Science.

Canton, OH

Why did you choose Kent State University?
Some of my family attended Kent State and had great experiences. I was then very impressed by the exercise physiology and nutrition programs. 

What do you plan to do after you graduate with your Bachelor's degree?
I am attending Lipscomb University for my master's degree with the ultimate goal of obtaining my doctorate in exercise physiology to pursue research.


Alumnus - Hayden Gerhart, Ph.D., CSCS, TSAC-F



When did you graduate?
December 2016 with my Ph.D. in Exercise Physiology.

Where did you grow up?
Elizabeth, Pennsylvania

Who are you employed by and how long have you been there?
I am an Assistant Professor, Director of the Center of Sport Science and Research Education - Kinesiology, Health, and Sport Science - IUP. I have been here since January 2017. 

What skills did you learn at Kent State that make you successful?
I learned a lot about professionalism in the workplace. My writing got significantly better, especially since I was immersed in so many labs simultaneously. The specific laboratory skill that I continue to use daily is hard to pinpoint. I learned a lot within the Environmental Physiology Lab at Kent State, which was very helpful as I transitioned to IUP, and continue to work in Environmental Physiology and Tactical/Occupational Performance. 

What are your hobbies?
I love to exercise. I enjoy endurance exercise, as well as olympic and power lifting. I am also a member of my church's worship band and I love music, specifically drumming!

What was your favorite class?
My favorite class at Kent State was Environmental Physiology. This was where I learned the most information that still applies to my everyday job. Now at IUP, my favorite class to teach is Tactical Strength and Conditioning; a course that examines different occupational and physiological demands of tactical athletes and first responders.