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IU South Bend Launches Career Pathway Program in Exercise Science with South Bend Schools

Community Engagement Mar 8, 2024

IU South Bend students lifting weights during an exercise science class Indiana University South Bend and the South Bend Community School Corporation have launched a groundbreaking partnership to provide career pathway opportunities for students enrolled in the exercise science program at Washington High School.

“IU South Bend is dedicated to educating our next generation of health science professionals. Partnerships like this are critical to getting students interested in the field,” said Dr. Jesús Garcia-Martinez, dean of the Dwyer College of Health Sciences.

This collaborative effort is a significant step forward in South Bend Schools’ commitment to preparing students with hands-on career education opportunities, particularly in the growing field of exercise science.

Through this innovative partnership, Washington High School will offer college-credit education courses, taught by an IU South Bend faculty member, to qualified high school students, empowering them to start on an early-in pathway to higher education at IU South Bend.

“This career pathway program demonstrates our commitment to equipping students with the tools they need for success in both college and the workforce,” said South Bend Schools Superintendent Dr. Todd Cummings. “Thank you to our staff and partners at IU South Bend for supporting innovative opportunities like these for our South Bend Schools students.”

By offering college-level coursework, both institutions aim to inspire and prepare the next generation of exercise science professionals, encouraging them to pursue bachelor’s degree programs and beyond. The collaboration not only enhances educational opportunities for high school students but also serves as an opportunity to foster future career pathways in health and exercise science.

Seventy percent of the health science graduates at IU South Bend come from the region and 90 percent stay and work in the region following graduation.

For information about the Career Pathways PLUS program, contact Valerie Kozera, Program Management Specialist at 574-520-4227 or email


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