Pioneer Spotlight: Scott Soja
Scott Soja, assistant professor of health and human performance at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville, held a dual appointment as the head athletic trainer in athletics and senior lecturer in health and physical education at the university for the past 13 years, prior to his faculty appointment in fall of 2013.
Soja completed a Bachelor of Science in kinesiology, with an emphasis in athletic training, from Sonoma State University in Rohnert Park, Calif.; a Master of Education in physical education from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, Minn.; and is working to complete his Doctor of Education with the University of Memphis in Memphis, Tenn. He holds certifications as an athletic trainer by the NATABOC; strength and conditioning specialist by the NSCA; first aid, CPR, and AED instructor by the ARC; and is licensed to practice by the State of Wisconsin Department of Regulation and Licensing.
He has taught first aid/accident prevention/community CPR, physiology of exercise lecture and lab, principles of strength and conditioning, health promotion at the worksite, nutrition, injury prevention and treatment, advanced athletic training, and athletic training/rehabilitation internship at UW-Platteville.
What do you enjoy most about teaching these courses?
The thing I like the most is the engagement with the students in the classroom. When I accepted a full-time teaching position, I was not sure if I would have the same level of interaction with the students that I enjoyed as the head athletic trainer. Although I work with the students in a different context, they are still the main reason I enjoy working at UW-Platteville. I also enjoy being able to share the diversity of my education and training with the students. My various degree specialties and certifications allow me to engage students in a wide range of subject matters within the department.
How does the Dr. Patricia Collins Exercise Science Room enhance students’ learning experiences?
As an assistant professor in the department of health and human performance, I am excited to be able to utilize the resources and equipment in the recently constructed Patricia Collins exercise science laboratory classroom. This facility will provide students the opportunity to learn the physiological response to exercise and conduct fitness assessment protocols using advanced technology. It will also provide opportunities for undergraduate students to conduct research related to health and exercise science.
What qualities do your students possess that have impressed you the most?
First and foremost, the students at UW-Platteville are just good, friendly people. In the classroom, I have found students to be inquisitive. They continually challenge me with insightful questions and perceptive observations. They also exhibit a true appetite for learning, with a constant quest for understanding new philosophies, discoveries and methods in the health sciences.
How do you hope your classes help prepare students for their careers and life?
I believe that the courses and internships offered in the HHP program are appropriately structured to provide the students with the breadth and depth of knowledge needed to enter a wide variety of professional settings in the field of health promotion. The students are also held to a high level of accountability that helps them mature over the course of their studies and prepares them for life in general.
Interview conducted by: Laurie Hamer, College of Liberal Arts and Education.
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