The Discipline of Health Promotion

When it comes to the major I am creating, one of the most interesting disciplines is Health Promotion. The discipline of Health Promotion is vague but can be studied deeply considering all the aspects and concepts that come with the ideas behind Health Promotion even though it is always changing. “The objective definition of “discipline,” and the disciplines themselves are continuously changing as time goes on, making the idea more difficult to define” (The History of Academics and the Disciplines).

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When describing the discipline Health Promotion the main focus is always aimed towards informing society about the latest health trends in order to help the world be healthier as a whole. Creating a healthier world in general is one of the biggest concerns in Health Promotion. The way students in this discipline or major learn about this is by having a balanced schedule of courses involving physical activity, nutrition, health as an over all study, and much more.

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Each course allows the students to learn with hands on approaches. For example, in Physical Activity and Health, students are asked to do labs involving running and walking in order to gather there partners information. This allows students to act as a subject and a tester in preparation for the future and possibly the need to create a health plan for a client. This is all built off of the idea of health promotion. Understanding how to test someone and create a plan for him or her in order to live a healthier life allows that person to live happier and healthier.

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Health also spreads and what I mean by that is if one person is able to promote health and have it stick, then that person is also most likely to talk about it and promote ideas based around health. Everyone wants to be healthy its just whether the information is given and given correctly and that is the job behind the discipline Health Promotion. There are many sub divisions to Health Promotion but as a whole the major concept behind it is to create a healthier world one step at a time by keeping up with the latest health tips and studies.

The Health Promotion discipline has so much content, methods, and epistemologies that create the idea behind healthy living. When one thinks of the word health you might think of what you eat or your activity level. What if health to someone else made him or her think of mental state or even emotional state? This is where the concept health can get vague and when promotion gets brought in, even more vague.

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That is why the idea behind health promotion is to promote or inform people about the aspect of health that pertains to that individual. As someone studying the health promotion field as one of my disciplines, I need to understand the different aspects of health and what they truly are. There are so many areas in health including; exercise, nutrition, healing, mental state, emotional state, spiritual state, sleep, training, relationships, and much more. These areas connect to health promotion through courses taking at Plymouth State.

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For example the courses are designed to relate to one another. There is Principles of Health that relates to almost every single class I am in. This course touches on concepts while my other courses go in depth about those concepts. I think just the repetition of hearing that knowledge once or twice more helps connect the major concept of Health Promotion by that much. When it comes to the methods of health promotion it is hard to describe because methods change while the health information changes. “Academics have been constantly changing based on what society feels is important for the students to learn from the beginning of time” (The History of Academics and the Disciplines). As time changes so do the methods for health. The methods today for health promotion involve organizations, councilors, doctors, events, commercials, and much more. These methods all relate to other disciplines if you really think about it. In order to promote something successfully, how much business or marketing history should you have? I say a lot in order to properly promote. Another area needed for this discipline is communication and verbal ability to explain something successfully. This discipline as a whole is Health Promotion, but honestly how much further can the knowledge be stretched? The answer is there is no length it can’t go and that is why I am so intrigued in this discipline of Health Promotion. “The great aspect of the twenty-first century is that mostly all disciplines encompass aspects of other disciplines creating a multidisciplinary approach” (The History of Academics and the Disciplines). This quote explains so much about knowledge and how far it can truly spread and weave itself through different areas of disciplines. This is one of the biggest ideas I love about my discipline because the connections are never ending.

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There is always more knowledge to learn and connect to the business world or maybe even the science world. Not only is there so much more knowledge out there, but the idea behind Health Promotion is to help people. That is the number one reason I love the discipline of Health Promotion. Throughout the course of Interdisciplinary Studies, my twitter account has excelled in health promotion.

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Between the NAMI (National Awareness of Mental Illness) organization and the Everyday Health accounts, the discipline of Health Promotion is related to every single tweet. The perks to having health promotion throughout a twitter feed are endless. The reason I say this is because every minute there are new articles posted about new studies involving health changes. For example, I just opened my twitter account and within three minutes of looking I found an article posted by Cleveland Clinic discussing how alcohol affects over all health. By following these scholarly accounts on twitter allows me to stay up to date with all the changing health trends and that is the first step of understanding the discipline of Health Promotion. “With Interdisciplinary Studies growing rapidly throughout the United States, students are now able to create their own fields of study by combining many disciplines and making it into their major that reflects their own values, passions, and interests” (The History of Academics and the Disciplines).

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My passions and values fall right into the discipline of Health Promotion because I choose to live a healthy life and want everyone to as well. Having overall health is what makes humans actually happy for a long-term period instead a moment or two. Another major area of the discipline Health Promotion that should be understood is the past and history of it. “The disciplines, where we find a wealth of specific knowledge, are the building blocks of Interdisciplinary Studies. Understanding the past disciplines is relevant to understand the future disciplines” (The History of Academics and the Discipline).

The history of Health Promotion should be understood before future ideas are brought into the picture. Understanding areas of health that have failed in the past need to be realized and new topics need to overcome the areas that have been misleading. The idea behind Health Promotion came into play around the 1980’s but before the health promotion aspect was around there was public health that also needs to be understood. “Three crucial phases are identified.

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The first phase took place during the nineteenth century, a period when promoting good health was part of the broader development of public health measures in the West, such as the improvement of sanitation. The second phase occurred in the early to mid twentieth century, a time when the focus of public health shifted away from the environment as a cause of ill health and began instead to focus on families and individuals. The third phase encompasses the late twentieth century and beyond. This is the period of the ‘new public health’, characterized by its focus on prevention, risk and the environment, and of health promotion as a national and international movement” (Alex Mold and Virginia Berridge). As you can see the history of Health Promotion focuses on the areas needed of that time period. Starting with sanitation because of diseases of that time which led to today; the focus of prevention. The discipline has changed from how to help the disease or problem to preventing it as a whole and that is the best part. Why not study the problems and prevent them before they occur? Understanding the past of the Health Promotion discipline is crucial for the future of the discipline.


Picture taken by: Mackenzie Palmer

The discipline of Health Promotion is truly one of the best disciplines for me to study because it is everything I stand for. Understanding this discipline and the areas it can relate to is crucial considering the real idea behind promoting health. The knowledge that comes with this discipline is relatable to almost any other discipline and that is why I see myself continuing on with learning new knowledge everyday. I cannot wait to see where this discipline takes me in the future as well as what I can learn from it along the way.

Mold, Alex, and Virginia Berridge. “The          History of Health Promotion.” ,


Reflection after Reading “Ten Cheers for Interdisciplinarity”

After reading “Ten Cheers for Interdisciplinarity” written by Nissani, I am realizing some of the major reasons I found Interdisciplinary Studies so appealing for myself. I think the biggest attraction I had to this approach of learning was that fact that I can study two separate areas of my discipline while constantly connecting them. This idea of understanding two areas of a field while still relating important areas that intersect is one of the main reasons I followed this approach. I also knew I was interested in the overall wellness but did not want to teach it necessarily.

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I rather study the business of it; dig deeper into the roots of how to make this promotion actually affect the lives of others. In Nissani’s article they mention, “Future specialists will perhaps be able to see their field “as part of a wider context, to reflect on the impact of their discipline’s activities on society, and to enhance their ability to contribute to social developments” (Huber, 1992, p. 290). This idea of affecting society and social developments within the business of health promotion is where I aim to be. The knowledge relatable to both of these disciplines is endless and that will keep me thriving in the future.

Interdisciplinarity will improve my education in the future in many ways. One of the biggest aspects I took from this reading is that there is no end to the knowledge.

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Having multiple disciplines in life guarantees the ability to learn and keep learning. This keeps me on my toes and ready to learn honestly at any time because if I can relate it to my two disciplines; health and business then I am constantly going to be thinking about my future. Nissani mentions, “In a world of limited resources, interdisciplinarians may be perceived as competitors. Disciplinarians may be perfectly content doing things their way and reluctant to labor for a devil they don’t know. Inside and outside academia, the interdisciplinarians’ concern with interconnections and the larger picture may be viewed as potentially subversive.” This quote stuck out to me because I see myself in the future making connections and never turning down knew information. I think many people forget that knowledge is power and the more knowledge one has, the more affect they have on the world depending on how they use it. The major of Interdisciplinary allows me to view my future as a learning opportunity in the disciplines I feel most strongly connected to and that is why my education will be improved by studying interdisciplinarity.


Even since just the beginning of this semester, I have experienced a lot from interdisciplinary learning. Understanding that there is more information offered than what is presented is one of the biggest ideas I now think about in every class. For example, learning about certain chapters in human biology. I sit in class and learn about genes and cancer and while this is all being presented, I find myself thinking about the business side of this information. Or possible routes this information could take in order to promote health in the development of a society. Realizing that I am always thinking about the future throughout the day is one of the biggest aspects of interdisciplinarity because at the end of the day I am making my own future. No knowledge is too much because that knowledge you might have ignored, could lead me to somewhere tomorrow.

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Nissani mentions, “But if we mistake disciplinary knowledge for wisdom; if we forget how much we don’t know; if we forget how much we cannot know; if we don’t set for ourselves, in principle at least, the ideal of the unity of knowledge; we lose something of great importance.” If we forget about the amount of information we don’t know and focus on what is right in front of us, more will be gained in the long run. Another experience I have had just from being in the Interdisciplinary Studies program other than the ability to make more connections, was the idea behind trying to find the big picture in all of my courses. I find myself asking questions in my head like; where will this take me? What is the big picture here? What am I really being asked to learn? All of this is leading me to my future and I am slowly realizing this, as I get further into my disciplines. Nissani says, “The modern mind divides, specializes, thinks in categories: the Greek instinct was the opposite, to take the widest view, to see things as an organic whole…” I liked this quote a lot because all these courses we take have such specific guidelines to follow and are divided into assignments but where is this all leading? The organic whole is the future is this aspect; Interdisciplinarity is what allows us to constantly be thinking about the future and how to engage it and that is why I chose a Interdisciplinary Studies major.





Business of Health Promotion

Title: Business of Health Promotion

The program I have created here at Plymouth State is the Business of Health Promotion. This program was first created as an idea last semester because I was in the major Health Education and Promotion. I was enjoying my courses, but kept thinking this isn’t exactly what I see myself doing, especially the teaching side of it. I originally planned on minoring in business with my degree in Health Education and Promotion, but as the sem

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ester continued I wanted more of a business aspect as a major. This brought me to the idea of Business of Health Promotion. This major is perfect for my future in the sense of how many opportunities it gives me and where the opportunities lie. The idea that I can enter into the marketing and business background of actually promoting health as a whole is what I can see myself doing. Another aspect of this major that I could also see myself visiting is promoting health in the corporal or business level. Health is a major part of everyone’s life and being able to either promote it or market it at a business level is something I am extremely passionate about. Having different paths I could go down is what makes this major exceptional for me and what I am passionate for. I do understand that a minor in Business or a minor in Health Education and Promotion could get me similar results but I believe they are just as important to each other for my future. No other program is like this at Plymouth State and I believe it is time to create it. There are majors that link business with sales or health with teaching, but where is Business of Health Promotion? Not only does my future include this major but honestly the future as a whole. Health Promotion is crucial for the future health of everyone and it is hard to properly market without the business aspect of it.


The courses in my contract relate specifically to what I will be doing in my future career. For my QRCO course I choose Business Statistics. This course is a generalized introduction that includes business applications. This is important to my major because this course is one of the building blocks for many business enterprises in today’s society. Being able to feel comfortable with computer applications is needed in order to develop a career in Business of Health Promotion. This leads me to my next course chosen which was Mental Health Issues.

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Kirsten Leishman

This course pertains to my major because mental health is a huge part of overall wellness. Not only is it important to health but also the amount of organizations and business opportunities involving these issues are endless. Consumer Behavior is also helpful to this major I have created. The reason for this is because my major involves promoting and selling to consumers the proper health information to benefit them. Without understanding the process consumers go through while purchasing means I could potentially work hard on something that won’t sell to a certain target market. Another course I see important to my major is Event Marketing. This course is so important to Business of Health Promotion because it gives me the opportunity to have hands-on learning skills. This course gives insight about promoting, creating, and planning events, which would all be part of my future in this degree.

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Simon Fusillier

Branding and Marketing Communication is another course offered at Plymouth State that I believe is important to my major. In this course, I will learn how to compete against other businesses and win customers through communication skills. Communication skills are vital for my major because promotion is all about discussing and selling an idea to a certain target. Promoting Health across the Lifespan is another course I chose to include in my contract. The reason for this is because it offers information focusing on health from gestation to old age. Not only does it give me the building blocks to a healthy life, but also promoting it as well. This course includes a public health perspective that is needed for my future. It also discusses individual, social, and environmental factors that impact current and future health. The next course I am going to discuss is Human Resource Management. This course is important to the Business of Health Promotion because it analysis placement of employees, selection of jobs, governmental involvement, and performance appraisal. All of these areas of management are important to the business side of my major because they are the foundations of major corporations and what keeps them running smoothly.

Photo Taken By: Mackenzie Palmer

Nutrition is a course that must be included in this major. The reason for this is because I can promote health as much as I want, but without the correct information pertaining to what the human body needs, there is no point. Nutrition is a basic understanding needed for my major. Exercise and Health Physiology is another important course I need in my contract. This course involves growth and development not only in a behavioral way but also on the physical activity aspect. Considering my other health courses don’t involve much information on physical activity, this course is needed in order to understand that side of the health field. Wellness Choices Health Activity is another course that is beneficial to my major. This course provides basic information about simply living a long, healthy life. It focuses is on what to eat, how to exercise, and even mental health components. This course is good to have in order for me to fully promote health at a business level. The course Principles of Marketing is needed in order to advance my major. This course is a base level marketing course that includes so much information about promoting to the correct group of consumers, proper ways to market yourself as well as material, and even product innovation through my own creativity. Not only does this course itself have a lot to offer, but also is a prerequisite for other courses I plan to take. For example, the course Marketing Research can’t be taken until Principles of Marketing is completed. Marketing Research is a course that will allow me to solve problems by looking at data on the web and analyzing it. I also will be able to use marketing research to create wining strategies in my future of health promotion. Another course that has the same prerequisite as Marketing Research is Marketing Management. This course involves a mindset of innovation as well as managing the proper relationship with costumers. I will learn how to creatively keep customers returning which in the long run will lead to competitive advantages and profitability in my area of health promotion. The course Principles of Health is another important course for my major of Business of Health Promotion. This course presents information and statistics involving what overall wellness should be for a human and without this course, I don’t think I would have the proper background to promote a healthy lifestyle. The last course that is part of my contract is Physical Activity and Health.

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Connor Ashleigh

This course is helpful to my future because it is a hands-on learning course that focuses on not only physical activity, but also how to evaluate data from physical tests. This data is then studied in order to create a health plan to help people live a healthier life. This is exactly what I want to do in the future. I want to help other people live a healthy, full life through the business and marketing world.

Apart from my contract, there are a few other directional courses that I believe are essential for the Business of Health Promotion. Two courses I have already taken and believe should be needed as well are Human Biology I and II. These classes are the make up of human bodies and understanding the body is crucial for understanding the health of one. Another course I have taken that adds to the background of this major is Digital Imagination. This is a course that Photoshop is used in daily and allows students to use their creativity. This allows students to create advertisements and pages that I appealing to the eye of a consumer. Those three courses add to the major Business of Health Promotion and I recommend these courses be taken.

The major Business of Health Promotion widens my opportunities for my future greatly. Having the ability to shape my major the way I believe will best benefit my life is all part of the idea behind Interdisciplinary Studies. Being able to combine business, marketing, and health in a creative way allows me to express my full potential as a worker in our future society. Being passionate about my work and career are what keeps me moving forward and excited for the future. The Business of Health Promotion opens so many doors for me at many different levels of involvement and that is why I believe these combinations of courses will get me to where I want to be in life.





Interview of Barbara McCahan

Photo produced by Barbara McCahan

Introduction: The following information in this post reflects an interview I conducted for my course Interdisciplinary Studies. I chose Barbara McCahan as a subject to interview in order to get a better grasp on the health field and the possible connections it has to life outside of Plymouth State University. When I was told I needed to interview a professor I knew right then and there I wanted to interview Professor McCahan. The reason for this was because of her attitude towards a healthy lifestyle and her connections to many organizations in the field of health. In the interview, we discuss McCahan’s past before teaching as well as during. Along with this information we discussed Interdisciplinary Studies and possible opportunities in the future that could arise in the Health field.
Interview with Barbara McCahan at Plymouth State University
Barbara McCahan has been at Plymouth State for 28 years and began teaching Physical Education but has a degree in Biological Sciences and Biochemistry. She first began teaching Biology, Anatomy, and Physiology but morphed into physical activity because of a job opening. She had a young family at this time and loved teaching nutrition, health fitness, exercise physiology and many more courses. Professor McCahan has taught over fifty courses at Plymouth State. One aspect she loves about this field is that it is constantly changing and new information is brought into the picture and that makes this field so interesting. The entire industry of the health field has changed greatly from the past of bodybuilding to more of a healthy lifestyle outlook. Barbara McCahan is currently in the Health Education and Promotion major but considers herself a physical activity practitioner. This connects a lot of different areas together such as sociology, physiology, and phycology, which really forms McCahan’s base as a teacher and promoter. Barbara McCahan loves her position here at Plymouth State and lives an active life everyday. McCahan and her husband are very active; they swim, hike, ski, and bike. She also walks to work most of the time and really loves community-based research as well getting involved with the student body through health clubs. McCahan does a great amount of activities to stay healthy and fit for her own wellbeing, which is extremely important when promoting that lifestyle. She also grows her own food, has chickens, and recycles in order to benefit the community. McCahan teaches two classes a week and the rest of her time is spent with the center of active living and healthy communities. This incorporates many different organizations around the community and state. One of the organizations here a Plymouth State that Barbara McCahan has a lot to do with is Healthy PSU, which is a work cite wellness campaign. The campaign has worked with the local Common Man restaurants in the past and is very beneficial to the student life.
Barbara McCahan has her own business network outside of PSU that she keeps in her circle of work. She goes to many meetings for Association of Public Health and connects with many people on the lakes region level as well. She has connections within the region and has even been a keystone speaker at certain events. Promoting health is part of McCahan’s fabric of who she is; the idea of health and physical activity is just built into her. She has done a lot with the Circle Program and involving them in an active life. McCahan has also done many fitness programs such as dance classes, aerobic classes, jazzercise, and even more. When it comes to Interdisciplinary Studies McCahan also has had involvement.
Barbara McCahan is strong believer in the Interdisciplinary Studies and has been apart of the board. She see’s her position at PSU as almost an Interdisciplinary Study itself because of the different involvements each part of health really has to promote the overall picture. When it comes to collaboration with others and through departments McCahan believes more is always better in the sense of communication. Discussing and talking to others to form something is much better and will come out stronger at the end with more collaboration. Barbara McCahan gave great advice about being proficient in a few areas of my major and being functionally familiar with the rest. In other words gather as much information as possible but focus in on one or two areas. This concept really helped me understand the idea behind Interdisciplinary Studies as well as this entire interview. After a thirty-minute interview, I thanked Barbara McCahan greatly and we both went to class considering she is my professor for Physical Activity and Health. This interview was both beneficial to my major as well as to understanding the base of the Interdisciplinary Studies.


Articles Reflection

After reading these articles, I can definitely say I understand what the point of an ePort actually is. At first I didn’t understand why we needed one of these but now I understand that these are crucial for our networks and relationships we make based on all our individual majors we plan to create. These articles all work together in order to form my education because they truly express how individually and uniquely our own domain can be which is why we are all in this major. For my major, I am able to reach out and create relationships with people in the field of health and business/ marketing which is needed in order for success. For example, in Do I Own My Own Domain If You Grade It? Rikard says, “It is a living portfolio, my representation in the digital world.” I think this is a great way to look at my future and how I can make this major as successful as possible. I can truly use this portfolio to shape how I want my major to be as well as show the world (web) information that connects my two areas I want to combined.  In one of the other articles I thought this quote stood for a lot as well”.In building that personal cyberinfrastructure, students not only would acquire crucial technical skills for their digital lives but also would engage in work that provides richly teachable moments ranging from multimodal writing to information science, knowledge management, bibliographic instruction, and social networking.” This quote really helped me understand that we are building a multimodal that forms us as a person and what we want to study, not what was given to us to study. I think that is the coolest part about this entire course as well as these readings. I do understand some of the arguments against web domains only because I do believe interaction and communication through eye contact is just as important but the combination of the two together can take our information and gatherings that much further for our future and honestly others as well. Over all I think these readings/ articles really showed me that this domain and ePort can help me express myself and my interests in a way that will benefit my future because of the networks and relationships I can build through this domain. I am excited to see where my creativity and domain take my major.