From the department of exercise science and athletic training at Manchester University

From the Department Chair

Jeff Beer
Jeff Beer
Department Chair
Professor of Exercise Science and Training 

It is the start of another fall semester, yet this one looks a bit different. The hallways are taped off with one-way traffic up and down the stairs. The drinking fountains have been deemed unusable, and the PERC gymnasium is being used as a COVID-19 testing site. It is going to be an academic year for the history books.

With that said I can say with certainty that WE ARE READY! Led by our reopening team, it has taken a diligent team effort to ensure that our students are as safe as possible. I am hopeful that we can get in an entire year of in-person teaching. We are not blind to the possibility of setbacks, but our ESAT faculty is resilient and ready. I am looking forward to a year of firsts and seeing my students again, “mask-to-mask.”

We have much to be excited about. In this edition of the ESAT newsletter, you will read about promotions, job title changes, new students, new hires and retirements. We are enthusiastic to introduce our new cohort of MAT students and their unique backgrounds, geography and talents. With great optimism, we share news that W. Thomas (Tommy) Smith has been appointed as the new dean of pharmacy and health sciences. We look forward to his leadership and continued support.

I’m eager to share with you changes and additions of majors and new ventures. Our department is continually growing and always thinking five steps ahead. We know to be successful we need new and innovative ideas, new faculty and a drive to be the best. It is who I am as chair and who our ESAT faculty are at MU. Feel free to reach out to me, and enjoy the newsletter.

An Outlook for the MAT 2020-2021 Class from Jeff Beer


The experience for this year’s class is unique. I’ve said that before, but now for much different circumstances. This year, we’re teaching and learning with masks, social distancing and limited contact with our patients, students and professors.

That said, we’ve brought in another cohort of students this year who have blown my mind. They are a mix of two-year master’s students and students who have progressed through the 3+2 undergraduate/MAT program.

Our cohort size is continuing to expand. This year, we welcomed 14 new MAT students (pictured), added to our cohort of 14 second-year students, they total 28.

They’re diverse, they hail from all around the country, and their accomplishments compete at a national level. We strive to be the best, and it is what we want to demand from ourselves and our students. Although times are different, we are becoming more creative in our learning and teaching.

Thank you to all students who make this possible.

~ Jeff


The MAT Class of 2022

Laura Aroz
Tuscon, Arizona

Kelsey Bair
Fort Wayne, Indiana


Colin Calvert
Plymouth, Michigan

Donjanae Chamberlain
Anderson, Indiana


Emily Hanneman
New Palestine, Indiana


Sydnee Jensen
Casper, Wyoming


Alexis Levesque
Grand Isle, Maine



Sam Orr
Plymouth, Michigan


Bailey Riley
Fort Wayne, Indiana

Summer Saylor
Fort Wayne, Indiana


William Stahly
Manchester, Michigan


Meagan Trimpey
Bowling Green, Ohio

Linying Xiao
Centennial, Colorado

Ashley Young
Brownsburg, Indiana



Department Academic Plans and Progressions

The below information will give you all some insight on our changes within majors and movement for growth.

Clinical and Rehabilitation Sciences & Human Performance
As mentioned before the previous Exercise Science Concentration major is now Clinical and Rehabilitation Sciences. The previous Fitness and Recreation Concentration major is now Human Performance. This change was due to increased confusion with concentrations and the growing terminology of majors across the country.

Clinical and Rehabilitation Sciences is ideal for any student interested in a health profession such as physical therapy, occupational therapy, athletic training, etc.

Human Performance is for students looking to complete a personal training or strength and conditioning professional degree. We are already ERP (Education Recognized Program) with the National Strength and Conditioning Associate, which makes this a perfect situation.

Human Performance Education
As our alumni know, the Physical Education Teacher Education (PETE) program was dropped from the MU curriculum this last fall. The Departments of Education and Exercise Science and Athletic Training proposed a new program in hopes to still license future teachers. Where PETE was a standalone program, the new program combines the Human Performance major with required Education courses. This program is in effect for this academic year. We are hopeful to keep educating great future educators within this major. Thank you to Dr. Kim Duchane and everyone in the Education Department who helped make this possible.

Master of Science in Nutrition and Nutrigenomics
Although not in the ESAT Department, development of the new master’s program in nutrition and nutrigenomics is progressing with anticipation and excitement. This program was the vision of Dr. Teri Beam, professor of pharmaceutical sciences and pharmacogenomics, and Dr. Jeff Beer, professor of exercise science and athletic training. Students who graduate with this degree with have a master’s in Nutrition and Nutrigenomics (MSNGx).

bollinger-lauraNutrigenomics, a relatively new development in science, makes Manchester’s a groundbreaking program, and a unique opportunity for potential students and companies.

Leading the development of the program is Laura Bollinger, program director for the Master of Science in Nutrition and Nutrigenomics. Laura earned her B.S. in Exercise Science (2005) and her M.S. in Dietetics (2012) from Ball State University. She is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, bringing 15 years of experience in the nutrition and exercise industry. She is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the American College of Sports Medicine.

Nutrition Sciences
With the master’s degree in development, we’ve been approved to move forward with an undergraduate program in Nutrition Sciences. Katherine Matutes, Ph.D., E-RYT 200, RYT 500, YACEP has been hired as an assistant professor of nutrition and exercise science and athletic training, with plans to admit the first official cohort in fall of 2022. More to come.

Student Success

Erin Orttel ’20 MAT passed the BOC exam.

Savannah Delgado ’20 undergraduate athletic training passed the BOC exam.

Haley Farris ’20 was accepted into graduate school for clinical psychology.

Jake Van Pelt ’21 (Parker City, Ind.) and Zach White ’22 (Logansport, Ind.), both Human Performance majors, have been selected to receive the 2020 Jean Lee/Jeff Marvin Collegiate Scholarship from the Indiana Society for Health and Physical Educators (InSHAPE). Each year, InSHAPE awards up to six $1,000 academic scholarships to undergraduate students enrolled full-time in an Indiana university and this year, MU student teachers received two of them. The scholarship award is based upon potential as a professional, grade point average, professional competencies, and participation in collegiate activities, financial need, and recommendations.

W. Thomas Smith Named Dean

smith-w.thomasW. Thomas (Tommy) Smith will serve as the dean of pharmacy and health sciences at Manchester University.

“This change formalizes some responsibilities that he has carried for quite a while and anticipates new responsibilities that will emerge as we add additional academic programs in Fort Wayne,” said Celia Cook-Huffman, vice president for academic affairs.

He is dean of Pharmacy Programs and professor of pharmaceutical sciences. In his expanded role, Smith will serve as dean for all programs on the Fort Wayne campus and for the exercise science and athletic training programs on the North Manchester campus. Read more >

Dr. Kim Duchane to Retire

Kin Duchane

Dr. Kim Duchane, professor of exercise science and athletic training, will retire at the end of the 2020-2021 academic year.

A member of the Manchester University family since 1992, Dr. Duchane has been a mentor, professor, friend and colleague to all. During an exemplary career, he advanced the physical education and adapted physical education programs to new levels of excellence.

“Kim has passion, drive, heart and the character of a great human being,” says Jeff Beer, chair of the Department of Exercise Science and Athletic Training. “I wish him the best and know he will continue to be a person of ability and conviction after MU.”

Dr. Duchane welcomes retirement wishes from friends and former students.

Lucas Dargo is new Program Director of Athletic Training


Lucas Dargo, assistant professor of exercise science and athletic training, has been named program director of the accredited Master of Athletic Training (MAT) Program at Manchester University.

The Fort Wayne resident succeeds Mark Huntington in the program. Huntington is retiring this month after 35 years at Manchester. Read the full press release here.

Welcome Jessica Huett


The ESAT Department welcomes Dr. Jessica Huett, who will serve as assistant professor of exercise science and athletic training, as well as coordinator of athletic training education. Dr. Huett earned a B.S. from Wright State University, a Master of Science from California University of Pennsylvania, and a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) from Ball State University.

Says Department Chair Jeff Beer, “Jessica is highly motivated and has shown that already with her drive and passion for the program and her students. With her extensive knowledge in an array of fields, we can’t wait to see the level she can take our clinical education.” 

Welcome Katherine Matutes


Katherine Matutes, Ph.D., E-RYT 200, RYT 500, YACEP has been hired as an assistant professor of nutrition and exercise science and athletic training. Matutes received her doctorate in nutrition from Purdue University with an emphasis on molecular metabolism and food science. While at Purdue, she also received the dietetics didactic verification statement and intends to complete the RDN credentialing process in the near future. She is pursuing a master’s degree in science and medical communication from Johns Hopkins.

Additionally, Dr. Matutes has completed the certificate in training for childhood, adolescent and adult weight management from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Her expertise includes healthy cooking emphasizing environmentally sustainable techniques, weight management, sports, cardiovascular and wellness nutrition.

Dr. Matutes is passionate about sharing evidence based guidance to the lay audience. Communication has been a cornerstone of her career. She worked in community wellness for more than a decade educating the public and facilitating diverse wellness opportunities such as farmer’s markets, healthy vending & food service, cooking classes and family physical activity.

In the academic environment, Dr. Matutes served as a site supervisor for dozens of undergraduate students during their field experiences and previously worked as an adjunct faculty at the University of Indianapolis, where she taught worksite wellness and yoga.

She enjoys delving into all aspects of wellness and has been practicing yoga for 20 years, is recognized by Yoga Alliance as an expert and has been a certified personal trainer for 30 years. 

In Closing...

I wanted to remind everyone of the retirement of a great colleague and friend, Dr. Mark Huntington. I wanted to say again how lucky we were to have him in all the capacities he served at Manchester, and will always admire his drive and wisdom. I plan to continue to use him as a resource as much as he will allow in his new status of Faculty Emeritus.

I’ve listed his credentials and information below. He loves hearing from our alumni and students, so please feel free to fill up his inbox with stories, personal news and gratitude. We thank you Mark and wish you the best!

~ Jeff

Mark Huntington, PED, LAT, ATC, PT

Professor Emeritus of Exercise Science and Athletic Training
Manchester: 1984 - 2020
Education: Manchester College, 1976 (B.S.); Boston University, 1979 (M.S.); Indiana University, 1994 (P.E.D)
Graduate Research Area: Human Anatomy Education
Courses Taught: Human Anatomy, Exercise Physiology, Human Performance Research
Current Research Interests:  Mild Traumatic Brain Injuries, Physical Fitness Levels of College Students
Memberships & Affiliations: National Athletic Trainers' Association

Contact Dr. Huntington at

Connect with us! Please take this opportunity to update your profile and share your news with alumni and friends of the Exercise Science and Athletic Training program. In addition, please indicate your interest in participating with the University in other ways. (If you have already expressed your interests, there is no need to respond again unless your preferences have changed).

To contact us, email Jeff Beer at