Lacy Puttuck is not only a faculty member in Concordia-Chicago’s exercise science program. She’s also an alumnus. She graduated among the university’s first cohort in the fully online graduate exercise science program about a year ago with her master’s degree in applied exercise science with a concentration in sports performance.
“Chose that track because it was in line with what I do,” Lacy said. She’s the director of sports nutrition for Dominate Your Game, a sports training institute based in Las Vegas. “Most exercise science people who are practicing have a master’s degree now. I’m a registered dietitian, so that bumps that up my credibility and value as well. It helps the nutrition side of my work to have this added knowledge and expertise. It adds more legitimacy to the work I do.”
In addition to her work at Dominate Your Game, Lacy teaches in the exercise science programs at Concordia. We caught up with her to learn more about her background and experience as a teacher and alumnus.
What attracted you to the Concordia Chicago’s program in the first place?
Since the program is 100 percent online, I was able to complete the work on my schedule. I was also impressed by the coursework that was laid out. Each class had a purpose and was well designed.
What part of Concordia Chicago’s program surprised you? In what way did it surprise you?
I was very surprised by how interactive it really was being online. I was able to get to know the students and instructors in a way I was not expecting. We were able to bounce ideas, have discussions and learn from each other. I was not expecting that.
What exactly were you expecting?
I was expecting a typical online program that consists of reading a few things, writing a paper and taking a quiz with very little if any interaction with other students.
As you took your degree into the world, in what ways had it prepared you for your career?
I have become a better writer and communicator. I have struggled with written communication and now I feel like I am well-prepared and able to write articles, presentations and other pieces related to my career.
As a faculty member, what do your students bring into the program that surprises you?
They have a vast array of experiences in the health/fitness/coaching world. This makes for a great learning environment and exchange of ideas. They all have different passions within the field and a different set of expertise. I really enjoy learning about different aspects and I know it helps the other students as well.
What are the biggest challenges you face as a professional in the fitness arena?
It is a very competitive field with very knowledgeable practitioners. It is best to find your passion within the field and really focus. This is what allows you to stand out.