Multidisciplinary Studies ()

Do you have a specific academic goal that cannot be met by existing majors, minors and electives? Do you have a career goal that you cannot prepare for through an existing WVU major? 

The CPASS Multidisciplinary Studies (MDS) program offers students the flexibility to create a program of study to meet their sport and physical activity related career aspirations. Students develop a breadth of knowledge in the areas of physical activity and sport sciences (PASS) by combining three minors; a minimum of two minors must be from CPASS. 

This flexibility and potential course offerings available through this major will help students succeed in both traditional and non-traditional employment opportunities in sport and physical activity professions. CPASS offers students a variety of minors leading to an extensive number of career paths. It is important to know that the possibilities are only constrained by one's imagination.


What you'll study

The MDS major allows students to customize a plan of study that allows one to pursue their passion and explore endless career possibilities in the physical activity and sport industry.

A personalized plan of study

If you supply the dream, we will help you develop a plan and gain the experiences necessary to achieve it. Students select three minors, a minimum of two must be from CPASS, to create a plan of study for the ideal career. A minor is a series of courses concentrated around a specific subject of study. 

Find your passion

For the student who loves physical activity or sport, this major is the perfect match. Take classes in areas of interest, gain in- and out-of-class experiences and turn your passion into your dream career.

Academic flexibility

This degree provides students with the flexibility to explore unique educational opportunities offered at the university. For students who aspire to attend graduate school, this major allows them the opportunity to customize a plan of study to meet any necessary prerequisites. 

Career Preparation

Build a specialization

Employers and graduate school programs seek versatile and creative individuals, like graduates of the CPASS MDS program.

Specialize in a competitive industry

It is estimated that revenue from the sport and physical activity industry exceeds $400 billion worldwide. Physical activity and sport are a major social institution in American society. This industry has continued to experience major growth over the past several decades, with no anticipated declines in the near future. Follow your passion and build a unique specialization to excel in this exciting, dynamic and growing industry.

Sample career paths

Activity Director

Activities directors work in a variety of settings, including residential facilities, community organizations and camps, to develop programs and coordinate recreational activities for residents and participants. They provide leadership in the planning, developing, coordinating and implementing comprehensive policy, systems and environmental change and physical activity strategies to prevent obesity and chronic diseases.

Other possible minors

Child Development, Dance, Family Studies or Psychology

Athletic Administrator

Athletic directors oversee the sports programs at high schools and colleges. Since specific career information isn't available for athletic directors, some of the information below is based on the closely related field of postsecondary education administrators. Find out about the job skills, necessary education and salary potential for athletic directors and other administrators.

Other possible minors

Leadership Studies, Marketing or Professional Sales

Fitness Facility Manager

General managers at fitness clubs provide general supervision for public gyms, commercial gyms and training facilities. They typically directly supervise a team of departmental managers or supervisors who oversee aspects of the club such as weight rooms, exercise and yoga classes, saunas and pools, and other areas of concern. The general manager typically helps provide overall direction and guidance to the club. He or she also may report to a regional director, executive or ownership board regarding the financial health of the club and ongoing operational initiatives.

CPASS minors

Personal TrainerSport CommunicationsStrength & Conditioning and/or Sport & Exercise Psychology

Other possible minors

Marketing, Entrepreneurial Studies or Health Promotions

Fitness Instructor

Fitness trainers and instructors lead, instruct, and motivate individuals or groups in exercise activities, including cardiovascular exercises (exercises for the heart and blood circulation), strength training, and stretching. They work with people of all ages and skill levels.

Other possible minors

Health Promotion, Nutrition and Food Studies

Outdoor Recreation Leader

Recreation workers design and lead recreational and leisure activities for groups in volunteer agencies or recreation facilities, such as playgrounds, parks, camps, aquatic centers, and senior centers. They may lead activities such as arts and crafts, dance, sports, adventure programs, music, and camping.

Other possible minors

Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Resources

Sports Data Scientist

Data analysts can work in an array of industries, examining data and ensuring its accuracy while ensuring it is being used properly in accordance with company guidelines. Industries hiring these professionals are varied, with options ranging from manufacturing to healthcare and beyond. Data entry and reporting is common, as it creating and deleting data warehouses as needed. It is also common to be charged with the communication of data between different parties in order to complete projects.

Other possible minors

Statistics or Mathematics

Sporting Events Manager

Meeting, convention, and event planners coordinate all aspects of events and professional meetings. They arrange meeting locations, transportation, and other details. Meeting, convention, and event planners spend time in their offices and onsite at hotels or convention centers. They also work onsite at hotels or convention centers, and they often travel to attend events and visit prospective meeting sites. During meetings or conventions, planners may work many more hours than usual.

Other possible minors

Entertainment Media, Hospitality and Tourism Management or Leadership Studies

Sports Information Director

Sports information directors document and publicize the accomplishments of athletes and teams for the school or league they represent. SIDs typically work as a liaison between the school or league and the local or national media. Like many sports careers, there are few “typical days” for SIDs, who may spend a morning editing a future media guide, an afternoon welcoming media for a team day, and an evening tracking statistics in the press box during a game.

Other possible minors

Statistics, English, Communications or Creative Writing

Sport Official

Umpires, referees, and other sports officials preside over competitive athletic or sporting events to help maintain standards of play. They detect infractions and decide penalties according to the rules of the game.

Other possible minors

Communication Studies

Strength and Conditioning Coach

Like personal trainers and group exercise instructors, strength and conditioning coaches help others to improve their fitness. But strength and conditioning coaches differ from the others in one very important way—the clients they work with are focused on improving their performance or skill to enhance performance in specific physical activity settings such as sport or the military. This is why strength and conditioning coaches work primarily with athletes and others who need to perform physically at a high level.

To be certified, individuals must pass the Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) exam.   The National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) is the national association that offers the certification. Courses within this track will help prepare you for this certification exam

Other possible minors

Nutrition & Food Studies or Entrepreneurial Studies

Wellness Coach

Wellness coaches are trained health professionals who focus on guiding clients to enhance their lifestyles and improve their mental and physical health and fitness. They can promote themselves independently to coach individuals one-on-one, but many work for organizations such as hospitals, fitness centers and various corporations. 

Other possible minors

Health Promotion, Nutrition and Food Studies or Entrepreneurial Studies

How To Apply

The Admission Process

This program is not available to incoming freshman.

How to apply

Current WVU students and incoming transfer students:

If you meet the prerequisites and requirements mentioned below, please contact Lindsay Augustine

Prerequisites and requirements

Students can apply for admission into the CPASS MDS program if they have completed a minimum of 29 credit hours with an overall GPA of 2.0 or higher.

Students within this program will be required to maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA. Students who fall below this 2.0 GPA will be placed on academic probation and subject to additional requirements such as required meetings with academic advisors and a retention specialist, study halls and tutoring, meeting with peer advisors, and meetings with the CPASS academic standards committee.

Learn more

Want to know more about Multidisciplinary Studies at WVU?

Request information

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Reach out

Portrait of Lindsay Augustine
Lindsay Augustine
Assistant Dean for Student and Enrollment Services
Valerie Wayda
Valerie Wayda
Associate Professor