Exercise Science Alumni

Jennifer (Lynch) Thurman: Jennifer began her career working for Dr. Kenneth Cooper (the “Father of Aerobics”) as a Clinical Exercise Physiologist.  On a consistent basis she led patients through their comprehensive preventive physicals at the Cooper Clinic. She administered hydrostatic and caliper body composition analysis, spirometry, audiometry, vision, glaucoma screenings, and cognitive assessments. In addition to this, she became certified in Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) allowing her to conduct treadmill and bike exercise stress tests on high profile clientele. She assessed patients’ electrocardiograms and cardiovascular fitness levels.

In addition, she became the Wellness Program Representative for the Cooper Clinic employees. It was here that she promoted and encouraged employee health by conducting biometric screenings and program execution through the means of incentive plans.

Jennifer is currently employed at Viverae, Inc. in Dallas, TX as a Health Specialist. She impacts the health of people all over the United States by coaching them on lifestyle behaviors and health goals.

Advice to current students: Stay connected, broaden your network and do not limit yourself to location. Diversify your skillset. Aim high. Internships are great and they can take you places you never thought possible.

Anna Mack: Anna Mack graduated from Shippensburg University in May of 2006 with a Bachelors of Science in Exercise Science and a minor in Biology. While at Ship, she was a member of the women’s track and field team.

Following graduation, Anna completed a strength and conditioning internship with Binghamton University and became a National Strength and Conditioning Association Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach (NSCA CSCS). She continued on to East Stroudsburg University where she received her Masters of Science in Sport Management.

Anna completed her graduate internship in Colorado Springs with the United States Olympic Committee, specifically USA Badminton (yes, Badminton). Wanting to stay in the Olympic family, she secured a job with the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).  With USADA, she held various roles from a Testing Coordinator to Manager and finally a Project Manager to lead the operational developments of the testing and education programs.

She’s currently employed at USA Triathlon as the National Team Program Manager and teaches yoga at Cambio Studios in Colorado Springs, Colorado. 

Advice to current students: Internships are more important than you know! Look at them carefully and don’t be afraid to move away from your comfort zone for a great experience-building opportunity. Gaining the experience and networking are some of the greatest tools you can have. Be patient, too. You won’t get your dream job in the first few years of your career. You need to work for it.

Julie Riccardo: Julie graduated from Shippensburg with a Bachelors of Science in Exercise Science and a minor in Biology in May 2007. During her time at Ship, Julie was a four-year member of the Women’s track and field team.

In August 2007, Julie got a job with HealthFitness, a company that works to infuse a culture of health that helps corporations/organizations manage health care costs, improve productivity and increase retention of talent.

With HealthFitness, Julie began as a Health Fitness Professional at CIGNA in Philadelphia, PA and had a title/job responsibility change to Program Coordinator. In 2009, Julie was promoted to Program Manager, overseeing one fitness center for GE Water in Trevose, PA. Two years of management experience set Julie up for a promotion to Contract Manager with HealthFitness in 2012, overseeing two fitness centers for ARAMARK in Philadelphia, PA and Downers Grove, IL.

Julie has a personal training certification through ACE and a primary group exercise certification through AFAA. In addition, she holds specialty group exercise certifications for Group Power, Cycling, Turbo Kick, and PiYo Strength.

Kaitlyn D'Annibale: Kaitlyn worked with several specialties while at Bloomsburg University, including Geisinger Health System, Phoenix Rehabilitation, Lewisburg Area High School, and Bucknell University. While at Bucknell University, Kaitlyn worked primarily with football, wrestling, and track and field. She worked closely with orthopedic surgeons, team physicians, and other healthcare professionals to provide stellar healthcare to athletes.

D'Annibale is a member of the National Athletic Trainers Association, and Maryland Athletic Trainers Association. She volunteers with the Special Olympics, American Cancer Society, and works yearly summer camps for youth including Ron Johnson's Rising Stars and the Jahri Evans/McBryan Football Clinic.

Tyler Gilson: Tyler graduated from Shippensburg University in May of 2007 with a Bachelors of Science in Exercise Science and a minor in Biology. While at Shippensburg, Tyler was a member of the wrestling team. The highlight of his career at Shippensburg was winning the "watt challenge" in the fall semester of 2007.

Following graduation from Shippensburg, Tyler went on to earn a Doctorate of Physical Therapy degree from Lebanon Valley College. He completed his final graduate internship at Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium in Juneau, Alaska a health clinic for Native American beneficiaries. Tyler was accompanied at Lebanon Valley College's Physical Therapy program by Lucas Flickinger a fellow "SHIPmate" in Exercise Science.

Tyler started his professional career in July of 2010 with Central Pennsylvania Rehab Services, in outpatient Physical Therapy. He then took employment as a traveling Physical Therapist leading him to Sitka, Alaska. In Sitka, he was employed by Sitka Community Hospital as an inpatient, outpatient and home health therapist. His free time time was spent as a deck hand for a commercial salmon fishing boat. Following his stay in Sitka, Tyler returned to Pennsylvania to work for Pinnacle Health Harrisburg Hospital in the acute care setting.

Tyler is currently employed as a staff Physical Therapist at Kuakini Hopsital in Honolulu, Hawaii. He spends his free time pursuing a his hobby of fishing, water sports, and beach observation.

Andrew Blass: Andrew graduated from Shippensburg University with honors in 2010 as a dual major. He received two Bachelor of Science degrees in Exercise Science and in Biology (with a Secondary Education Certification) and a minor in Coaching. He is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialis through the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Currently, Andrew is teaching 7th and 8th grade life science, a 7th grade gifted “quest” class in forensic science and comparative anatomy and physiology, and 8th grade chemistry and earth science at Conestoga Valley Middle School. In addition, he is coaching football and plays a significant role in the design and implementation of sport conditioning programs.

During his tenure at Shippensburg University, Andrew was the founding President of the Exercise Science Club and provided instrumental leadership for three terms. He was extremely active within numerous on- and off-campus organizations where he also held leadership positions. In addition, Andrew was also active in Departmental research. His research, related to creatine supplementation, was presented at the AAPHERD National meeting and the MARC-ACSM regional conference.

Coaching Minor Alumni

Neely Spence Grace: Neely Spence Grace completed her Bachelor's degree in Human Communication Studies and her minor in Coaching in 2012. While enrolled, she was a member of the Women’s track and field and cross-country teams under her coach and father, Steve Spence, who is also a SU alumnus.

An aspiring coach, Neely plans to combine the communication degree and coaching minor with her personal athletic experience. During her Junior year, Neely developed and mentored a youth track club at Grace B. Luhr’s Elementary school on the Shippensburg University campus. The club was extremely popular with participation by over half of the school enrollment. Post graduation, Neely moved to Michigan where she joined the Hanson’s Brooks Distance project and is pursuing her athletic goals as a professional athlete and 2016 Olympic hopeful. Though she trains in Michigan, her roots are still in south central PA where her family and Shippensburg community are her biggest fans.