Sep 23, 2023  
2022-2023 CNM Catalog, Volume 54 
2022-2023 CNM Catalog, Volume 54 [The CNM Academic Year includes Fall, Spring, Summer Terms]

Exercise Science and Wellness, Associate of Applied Science

School of Health, Wellness & Public Safety (HWPS)

This program of study is designed for students who are seeking a high-level education as a personal trainer and/or who plan to transfer to a four-year institution to pursue a baccalaureate degree in Physical Education, Exercise Physiology, Kinesiology, and Health & Wellness. The program combines a broad foundation in the liberal arts and sciences with technical courses in the emerging and expanding field of Exercise Science.

See Recommended Sequence of Courses

Graduates of the program will be encouraged to sit for exams to earn nationally recognized certifications as personal trainers (CPT) and/or group exercise instructors (i.e. ACSM, AFAA, NSCA), providing a beginning credential for those who choose to seek gainful employment as Personal Trainers or Fitness Instructors at local health clubs and fitness centers.

Approximate Costs of this Educational Option

Financial Aid Considerations

Educational Opportunities

This degree articulates well with baccalaureate programs in exercise science at New Mexico Highlands University and Eastern New Mexico University.

This educational option leads to employment as Personal Trainers or Fitness Instructors at local health clubs and fitness centers.

Career Opportunities

The US Department of Labor expects the employment of fitness trainers and instructors to grow 39% from 2020 to 2030. This growth is much faster than the average for all occupations.
Source: United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Fitness Trainers & Instructors at

According to O*Net reports a projected job growth in this field between 2019-2029 of about 15% with 66,400 annual job openings nationally. O*Net reports for New Mexico job growth in this field between 2018-2028 greater than 17% with 310 job openings annually statewide. This is great news, as it is higher than the national average.
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2019-2029 employment projections

Gainful Employment information is available from Job Connection Services.

Ten Year Rule for CTE Courses

Career and technical education courses in this program will qualify for credit for a period of ten academic years. Due to changing technologies, trends, and professional demands, courses completed ten or more years in the past will satisfy program requirements only if they are approved by the instructional school in which they were offered. Cohorted programs may have additional restrictions.

Program Requirements


Term 2

Minimum Credit Hours Required to Complete Degree: 61

* * PSYC 1110 - Introduction to Psychology  recommended

* * * PHED 1410A - Yoga: Beginning Yoga  recommended if planning to take FITT 2020 in Term 3

Program Approved Electives