Kate Heelan

Department Chair, Professor - Exercise Science

Office: CUSH 218   |    Phone: (308) 865-8180   |    Email: heelanka@unk.edu

Kate Heelan


I am the director of the Physical Activity and Wellness Lab, a state-of-the-art 9000 sq ft facility. Our mission is to address the obesity epidemic by providing expertise in community programs and initiatives aimed at increasing physical activity and healthy eating behaviors across the lifespan. We continue to strengthen partnerships with public school systems, community agencies and family units. Our long-term goal is to strategically expand our programs for implementation throughout Greater Nebraska 

I received the Leland Holdt/SecurityMutual Life Insurance Company Distinguished Faculty Award from UNK and am a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine for my research endeavors in the field of Exercise Science.  I greatly enjoy mentoring undergraduate and graduate students in the research process.

Link to Current Curriculum Vita


University of Kansas. Lawrence, Kansas:  2002 Doctorate of Philosophy, 

Exercise Science.  


University of Nebraska at Kearney. Kearney, Nebraska: 1995 Master of Arts in 

Education, Exercise Science.  


Drury College. Springfield, Missouri: 1993 Bachelor of Arts, Mathematics,  



Courses Taught

I teach Exercise Science classes such as Introduction to Exercise Science (PE 107), Fitness Evaluation ( PE 467/867), Exercise Physiology (PE 861), Research Methods (PE 475, PE 850) and Advanced Exercise Physiology (PE 870). 

Community Interests and Involvement

I love watching my children compete in sports and being involved in their activities. I am involved with the Kearney Soccer Club, Kearney Parks and Recreation and stay active within the community.