Meet Joe McCue

Joe, a 2012 graduate of DePaul’s MA in Applied Professional Studies (MAAPS) Program, is the Wellness Coordinator for the New Hampshire Department of Transportation, which serves just under two-thousand employees throughout the state. Joe is a Worksite Wellness Educator, a Certified Wellness Practitioner, Certified Worksite Wellness Program Manager, author, entrepreneur, and adjunct professor.

Joe earned his bachelor’s degree is in Mechanical Engineering from University of Massachusetts.  He worked in that field for several years until a cancer diagnosis changed the course of his life both personally and professionally.

Joe became a passionate advocate for his own health and tried to learn anything and everything he could which contributed to it.  After a circuitous series of events, he eventually found himself in a massage therapy school in northern California.  A few years later, he became a wellness coach and a few years after that, a certified personal trainer.


What led you to choose DePaul’s MAAPS program and what was your focus area?

After years of working with private clients one on one, I felt I wanted to make a bigger contribution.  Workplace wellness initiatives were gaining in popularity at the time and it seemed like that domain would provide me a fertile soil to help entire organizations instead of just one person at a time.

I figured that for organizations to be willing to hire me, I would need some solid credentials.  Having been an entrepreneur for many years prior to entering DePaul’s School for New Learning, the idea of creating my own program was most appealing, thus  I created my own focus area of Integrating wellness coaching into corporate health and productivity management programs.

 Have your career goals changed course since beginning the MAAPS program

They’re continuously evolving.  Originally I saw myself as a consultant, helping organizations develop, implement and evaluate their employee wellness programs.  Having been a “solopreneur” for several years, however, I felt I lacked a solid understanding of operational practices of organizations, especially large ones.  So much so, that I’m considering an MBA to compliment my MAAPS degree.

Since 2007, I have been an instructor in several massage therapy and wellness programs and I love everything about being a teacher.  I decided to shift my focus therefore from being a wellness consultant to being a wellness educator.  In his capacity, I feel I can fully inhabit what I have to offer companies.

Do you think the MAAPS program helped you to obtain your current position?

I think it did absolutely.  At many companies, people in a position like this are typically folks from the human resources department who have been tasked with running the wellness program in addition to their other duties.  The MAAPS experience, coupled with my background in wellness is what, I believe helped me stand out from the crowd.

 What are your Occupation(s)/Scope of Work/Area of Expertise?

I have been a licensed massage therapist for fifteen years, a wellness coach for ten and a personal trainer for seven.  I have been teaching college level massage and wellness classes for almost nine years and I recently accepted a position with the New Hampshire Department of Transportation as their Wellness Coordinator.  I’m very excited about this as I am responsible for the wellness programming for close to two thousand employees all over the state.  In addition, I am a part time photographer and sell limited edition giclées through my website.  My favorite subjects are landscapes and scenery here in the seacoast area of New Hampshire.

Can you tell us about any current projects you are working on and how you are able to apply your learning in the workplace?

I have been a practitioner of mindfulness meditation for many years and can speak for hours about its benefits.  I am currently in the process of implementing a mindfulness program for the NHDOT employees.  I’m especially excited about the potential this has not just for the individual wellness of each employee who participates but also for the positive impact I hope it will have on the culture of wellness throughout the entire Department.

The biggest piece I’ve been able to use is the Educating Adults Certificate.  Especially now, as I am creating non-traditional learning experiences in non-traditional locations for non-traditional adult learners!  The concepts I gleaned from the EA classes are proving invaluable.

Do you have any advice for graduate students or prospective graduate students?

The MAAPS program demands an intense and sustained level of self-awareness and personal reflection.  It can be very challenging but the more you authentically dive into that process the more successful you will be, both during and after.


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