Health Team

Shaw's Kinesiotherapy department on display at CIAA Tournament

Posted February 26
Updated February 29

The CIAA Tournament generates a lot of excitement for basketball fans, and it provides great publicity for member institutions such as Shaw University, but it's much more than a sporting event.

The tournament is about the 12 schools in the conference educating their students, and Kinesiology, the study of movement, is one popular area where students are finding lots of jobs.

Dr. Joseph Palmer, a professor at Shaw who teaches adapted physical education, says Kinesiotherapy is an accredited four-year degree program that applies knowledge of how the body moves to a variety of fields.

"We deal with developing strength, endurance and flexibility," he said.

The training prepares students for a wide variety of career paths such as research, fitness, ergonomics or occupational or physical therapy.

Marcus Nelson, a Shaw student, said he hopes to open his own massage therapy practice.

"When I first came here, I knew I wanted to work with people. I knew I wanted to help people in a medical field," Nelson said.

Students in the program gain a wealth of experience through internships with a number of local hospitals and other health care providers such as orthopedists and cardiologists.

Niataijah Austin wants to use her degree as a preparation for medical school.

"It's been a great experience. It's very hands on," she said. "I don't think you're going to get this experience or education anywhere else."

Each Kinesiotherapy student is also helping carry on a legacy of serving the health care needs of local communities.

The Leonard Medical School at Shaw University was the nation's first four-year medical school and produced more than 400 medical doctors between 1882 and 1912, when it closed.


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