Luke Novosel is a 2014 alumnus of the the B.S in Exercise Science program, a 2018 graduate of the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at the University of Pittsburgh, and now works for the New York Mets as a Minor League Physical Therapist and Athletic Trainer. In this Q&A, Luke talks about being a student in the Exercise Science program. His quotes have been edited for length and clarity.
What path led you to wanting to pursue Exercise Science?
Novosel: I played baseball at the University of Pittsburgh and was always interested in health and fitness growing up. Exercise Science was a major that allowed me to learn more about the body and the role that health and fitness played in my own athletic development.
What was one of your favorite experiences as a student in Pitt’s Exercise Science program?
Novosel: During my senior year, I was the vice president of the school’s Exercise Science Organization. We worked with our professors, classmates, and other University organizations to raise money to fund our trip to the American College of Sports Medicine Conference. It was such a fun experience and was my first introduction to the various educational, networking, and social opportunities in the field.
Did you have a favorite professor?
Novosel: Honestly, all of my professors were excellent, but I developed a special bond with Drs. Carma Repcheck and Betsy Nagle. They were so supportive throughout my time in the program and challenged me to develop the skill sets needed to pursue my professional goals. I owe much of my successes to them.
Tell us about your internship with Falk Pulmonary Rehab at UPMC.
Novosel: I would recommend this experience to any student. This was my first opportunity to develop patient-interviewing skills, observe interprofessional collaboration, and apply my skills learned in the classroom to actual patients. As the rehabilitation intern, I also had the opportunity to observe a 15-hour double- lung transplant which was an eye-opening experience.
How did the program prepare you for physical therapy school?
Novosel: Pitt’s program gave me the necessary foundation to build upon in PT school. So much of physical therapy is exercise prescription, and our ability to understand periodization and lifting principles is key to ensure optimal loading of our patients.
Do you have any advice for future students pursuing an Exercise Science degree at Pitt?
Novosel: If you have an interest in exercise and fitness, an exercise science degree at Pitt Education will help you succeed. I would also say that it’s important to adopt a growth mindset, find a mentor if you can, and surround yourself with like-minded people who will challenge you both personally and professionally.
What’s one fun fact about yourself?
Novosel: Harry Potter is my favorite book/movie series, and I love anything pumpkin