About the College
Craig Newschaffer, Raymond E. and Erin Stuart Schultz Dean, College of Health and Human Development
Improving human lives through innovative research, teaching, and outreach activities is the defining goal of the College of Health and Human Development. Our educational programs emphasize interdisciplinary approaches and engaged experiential learning. We truly are "committed to improving the quality of your life." Our faculty represent some of the most respected scholars in their disciplines, outstanding researchers, teachers, and leaders in numerous national academies and organizations. Their accomplishments speak volumes about the stimulating intellectual environment that the college has created and sustained. The college attracts intelligent, motivated and passionate students. In addition to learning in outstanding courses in the classroom and online, students engage in internships, study abroad, research projects, and service-learning activities that bring them into direct contact with industry, patients, clients, families, and consumers. These experiences provide students with real-world opportunities to hone their professional skills and expand their education while improving the world in which we live.
Mission and Goals
The College of Health and Human Development is a collaborative community of faculty, staff, students, and alumni that seeks to improve human health, development, and the quality of life for all people through innovative education, interdisciplinary research, and effective outreach with a scope that encompasses “cells to society” and conception through the end of life.
Departments and Schools
Department of Biobehavioral Health
Biobehavioral Health is an innovative department that explores health in an integrated way by considering how behavioral, biological, social, cultural and environmental factors may influence health. Biobehavioral Health students develop a strong foundation for future work or study in a range of fields, such as public health, health care, epidemiology, psychology, genetics, neuroscience, health promotion, biomedical research, and medicine.
Department of Communications Sciences and Disorders
Communication Sciences and Disorders is a leader in preparing professionals who address prevention and rehabilitation of speech, language and hearing problems. The major incorporates linguistics, acoustics, psychology, anatomy, and neurobiology. Students typically pursue graduate study and professional certification and licensure and hold positions in hospitals, clinics, schools, research centers, and other settings.
Department of Health Policy and Administration
The nationally recognized program in Health Policy and Administration (HPA) prepares students to understand the problems of health care access, cost, and quality. HPA prepares students to work as health services professionals, policy analysts, or to pursue graduate study in business, law, medicine, health administration, health services research, or public health.
School of Hospitality Management
The School of Hospitality Management combines a strong management and problem-solving orientation with real-world experiences to prepare students for the many career opportunities offered in the diverse and exciting segments of the hospitality industry. Penn State's Hospitality Management program is among the most prestigious of its kind in the nation.
Department of Human Development and Family Studies
Human Development and Family Studies (HDFS) is a social science program that emphasizes engaged learning to prepare students to work in a wide range of applied settings, including aging, family services, youth programs, child care and early childhood education, drug and alcohol rehabilitation, human resources, and other human service fields. Our graduates pursue advanced degrees in social work, psychology, counseling, human development, sociology, law, medicine, and public health fields. Coursework emphasizes psychological, social, and biological influences on individuals and families, and provides students with skills and experiences to prepare them to positively impact individuals, families, and communities.
Department of Kinesiology
Kinesiology offers an interdisciplinary program focused on human movement related to health, wellness, and performance. Students apply skills and knowledge in biomechanics, exercise physiology, motor-control, psychology, philosophy/history, and athletic training to real-life problems, preparing them for graduate study in allied health/medical professions and careers in fitness, wellness, teaching, and coaching.
Department of Nutritional Sciences
Nutritional science is a dynamic discipline that incorporates knowledge of human biology and biochemistry to understand how the body utilizes nutrients and related substances to maintain optimal health throughout the life span. Students gain an understanding of the interplay of nutrition and lifestyle, and how this relates to current public health issues, as well as to the development and dietary management of chronic and acute diseases. Students learn the theory of cellular and organ metabolism to prepare them for health professions, and practice the skills of nutritional assessment and counseling to prepare them to implement medical nutrition therapy and to understand nutrition guidelines and policies to improve public health and the well-being of the population.
Students may select one or more Options: Behavioral Nutrition and Public Health, Nutritional Physiology and Biochemistry, and Nutrition and Dietetics. The Nutrition and Dietetics Option is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND).
Department of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management
Our goal is to educate and inspire students to facilitate recreation, park and tourism activities to transform health and human well-being. We integrate topics such as environmental sustainability, human development, health and well-being, social innovation and entrepreneurship, community and economic development, and leadership with an eye toward diversity and inclusion. RPTM students are prepared for graduate study as well as careers in natural resource and park management, tourism (including ecotourism), event planning, commercial and community recreational services, professional golf management and related fields.
- Athletic Training, B.S.
- Biobehavioral Health, B.S. (Health and Human Development)
- Communication Sciences and Disorders, B.S. (Health and Human Development)
- Health Policy and Administration, B.S. (Health and Human Development)
- Hospitality Management, B.S. (Health and Human Development)
- Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. (Health and Human Development)
- Kinesiology, B.S. (Health and Human Development)
- Nutritional Sciences, B.S.
- Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management, B.S. (Health and Human Development)
- Deafness and Hearing Studies, Minor
- Diversity and Inclusion in Health and Human Development, Minor
- Global Health, Minor
- Health Policy and Administration, Minor
- Human Development and Family Studies, Minor
- Information Sciences and Technology in Health Policy and Administration, Minor
- Kinesiology, Minor
- Nutritional Sciences, Minor
- Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management, Minor
- Sport Studies, Minor
Change of Campus
Students may begin their studies in the College of Health and Human Development at any of the Penn State campuses and are expected to remain at the campus of admission until achieving fifth semester standing. Students initiate a request for Change of Campus using the Update Campus application in LionPATH.
A Concurrent Majors Program is one in which students take courses to concurrently meet the requirements of at least two majors, with graduation for all majors in the program occurring during the same semester. To add a concurrent major in the College of Health and Human Development, students must initiate the Add Major function in LionPATH located in Update Academics and complete the paper form for approval. Students should work with academic advisers in both majors before initiating the LionPATH Update Academics request.
A student who fails to earn a 2.00 cumulative grade-point average will be placed on academic warning. A student placed on academic warning will have a hold placed on registration and will be required to meet with an academic adviser in order for this registration hold to be removed. Notifications concerning the hold will be sent to a student’s campus email address. To remove academic warning, the cumulative grade-point average must be 2.00 or higher.
A student in academic warning who fails to maintain a semester grade-point average of 2.00 or higher will be academically suspended. A student who has been academically suspended may not schedule courses at the University for two consecutive semesters. (Note: Summer session is equal to one semester.) If suspended, a student should meet with their adviser to discuss re-enrollment.
The Center for Student Advising and Engagement serves as a central location to support College of Health and Human Development students and their families. The Center assists undergraduate students to explore educational opportunities and develop decision-making skills that will contribute to their academic, career, and life goals.
Diversity and Inclusion
The mission of the Office for Diversity and Inclusion is to promote and enhance the diversity of the college's faculty and student body, and to foster a welcoming and inclusive environment for everyone. We support the college’s efforts to recruit, retain, and graduate underrepresented students in our majors.
Faculty in the College of Health and Human Development are world renowned for multidisciplinary research on all aspects of human health, developmental sciences, and management in hospitality, healthcare, human services, recreation and other service organizations. Undergraduates have opportunities to work with some of the brightest and most well-respected researchers in the world.
Resources available through the College of Health and Human Development can identify the best study abroad program for you. We have many faculty-led study abroad programs in the College, and can connect you with other Penn State-approved programs. We are also home to the Global Health minor.
Internship and Career Opportunities
Graduates from the College of Health and Human Development work in nearly every segment of the services economy—healthcare, hospitality, tourism, recreation, parks, sports, education, and all human service fields. The rapidly growing career paths offer meaningful and purposeful work improving the quality of life for people.
College of Health and Human Development Mentoring Program
The College of Health and Human Development Mentoring Program connects HHD students and alumni by matching students who are juniors in their academic department with professionals in their field(s) of interest who can offer advice and information about career options or other issues relevant to particular fields.
Schreyer Honors College
The Schreyer Honors College, regarded as one of the nation’s top programs of its kind, promotes achieving academic excellence with integrity, building a global perspective, and creating opportunities for leadership and civic engagement. Schreyer Scholars, including those admitted after their first or second year of enrollment, are a diverse and motivated group of approximately 2,000 students at University Park and 20 Commonwealth campuses. The College strives to educate students who will have an important and ethical influence in the world, to improve educational practice, and to continue to be recognized as a leading force in honors education nationwide.
Honors in the College of Health and Human Development
The College of Health and Human Development has a vibrant community of more than 100 Schreyer Honors College students. Department faculty advisers work closely with students to connect them with research opportunities, fellowships and scholarships, and internships and clinical experiences. The College is also home to a unique program to develop female leaders--The Women’s Leadership Initiative is supported by alumnae of the College and women leaders throughout the nation and provides opportunities for emerging women leaders to develop the core values, attitudes and competencies that are critical components of quality leadership.