• From Baylor to the big leagues — via Robbins College of Health & Human Sciences

    Headshots of Brynn Johnson, Jeremy Chiang and Zac Howe

    Looking to make it to the big leagues? Sure, you could be a first-round pick… or, you could earn a graduate degree from Baylor’s Robbins College of Health and Human Sciences.

    Not one, not two, but three recent Robbins College grads have reached the pinnacle of pro sports just a few years after earning their Baylor diplomas — in athletic training, nutrition sciences and physical therapy:

    Brynn Johnson (MAT ’20) wanted to help people, but was unsure of her career path. After joining Baylor’s master of athletic training program in 2018, she worked with the BU football team and began to picture a future in sports. Encouraged by faculty, she applied for NFL internships, landing roles with the Los Angeles Rams, Detroit Lions and Kansas City Chiefs (and thus was a part of their Super Bowl run earlier this year.)

    “My biggest takeaway from all of my experiences, including my time at Baylor, is to be faithful to God and to yourself,” says Johnson. “If you can do that, you will be alright.”

    Jeremy Chiang (MS ’15) served as a sports nutrition graduate assistant and a nutrition educator during his time in Baylor’s nutrition sciences master’s program. After graduating, he completed short stints at Iowa State and Florida before returning to Baylor, where he spent two years helping lead Baylor’s sports nutrition program. That training and experience led to opportunities with Major League Baseball’s Toronto Blue Jays, where he eventually became head of nutrition for the team, and now the New York Mets. As major league performance nutrition coordinator for the Mets, Chiang oversees clinical and performance nutrition, collaborating closely with health professionals, coaches and chefs in a highly team-oriented environment.

    “[My professors at Baylor] would always challenge me to think outside the box,” Chiang recalls. “It was an open, family-based environment. The professors were all about helping you and challenging you. They would never say no to any questions you have or any interests you have.”

    Dr. Zac Howe (DPT ’19) knew he wanted to be a strength coach. Internships in college athletics, the WNBA and NBA taught Howe the importance of physical therapy. Howe found the perfect opportunity in Baylor’s doctor of physical therapy program — shorter than most DPTs, and with a hybrid format that meant he could keep his current job and not have to move during his studies. Following graduation, he completed a sports residency in Sacramento, then landed his dream job with the NBA’s Sacramento Kings. Today, as head strength coach, Howe integrates his physical therapy education into his work — while also serving as an adjunct instructor for Baylor’s DPT program.

    “There’s so much that I use from physical therapy in the weight room,” says Howe. “I’m much more confident in providing direction because of the knowledge I gained through physical therapy school. Through the Baylor PT program and clinical practice, I gained the confidence to take my job to the next level. It makes me a better practitioner.”

    Sic ’em, Brynn, Jeremy, Zach, and Robbins College!