Health Coaches Program

Get practical experience helping chronically ill patients set and achieve their health goals!

Specifics about the Health Coaches Program:

  • 2 consecutive semester course series (BIOL 304 and 305 Health Coaches I and II with CBL)
  • Community Based Learning (CBL) experiences each semester
  • Work one-on-one with your own patient to address their unique health challenges!
  • Apply during the spring semester of sophomore or junior to complete the courses as a junior or senior
  • Admission by instructor permission only


  • BIOL 101 and 102
  • Minimum cumulative GPA: 3.0
  • Application materials submitted to Dr. Jane Kring by 5PM at 4/1/2022. 

Important notes:

  • Each course counts as 0.5 units, but DOES NOT count toward Biology major requirements.
  • To participate in Health Coaches II and interact with patients, students are required to submit proof of current vaccinations and pass a drug screen and background check.
  • Health Coaches I and II meets on Tuesday mornings 10:10-11:40AM.

Course descriptions:

BIO 304 - Health Coaches I with CBL (0.5 units)A
The fall semester of Health Coaches is focused on understanding the role of different members of the health care team, gaining perspective on the nature of chronic disease, and learning skills including motivational interviewing. This course includes an experiential learning component known as Community Based Learning (CBL). The CBL component will require students to participate in a community placement, outside of class time, on a weekly basis throughout the semester; on average students can expect to spend up to/at least two hours per week in the community. This will allow students the opportunity to practice the skills being discussed in class. A wide variety of speakers including multiple physicians, health care administrators, physical therapists, nutritionists, hospice staff, clinical psychologists and other members of the health care team will speak to students about a variety of topics including the role of the health coach, population health, empathy, end of life care, cardiovascular screening, Diabetes Mellitus, physical therapy, nutrition, and the changing face of medicine. Instructor permission only.

BIO 305 – Health Coaches II with CBL (0.5 units)
During the spring semester of Health Coaches, students are assigned a chronically ill individual to visit, call and assist with setting and achieving health goals. After the initial patient visit and introduction by a healthcare professional, students spend 1-2 hours a week alone with their patient, talking about and implementing changes that will benefit their health. Most class periods are dedicated to clinical conferences, where students present their patients’ health challenges and current goals. Other professionals on the healthcare team will be present to share ideas that have worked with previous patients and offer support. Other class periods will focus on disease conditions affecting the health coach client population including substance abuse, chronic pain, depression, anxiety and behavioral changes that effectively manage these challenges. Instructor permission required.  BIO 304 is required as a prerequisite course.