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Impactful Service

Students probably know Dr. David “Pete” Peterson from the physical education class they took freshman year. Or maybe they’ve seen him in the gym practicing powerlifting upward of 600 pounds.

But what many students do not know is the vast experience he brings to the classroom from his service in the United States Navy.

After a distinguished 20-year career in the Navy, Commander Pete Peterson retired from active service as an aerospace operational physiologist. While in the Navy, Pete served as the director for the human performance lab. It was a position that took him to various military bases throughout the world, as well as at the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland.

As Pete pushed the midshipman to become more than they believed possible, he gently nudged them as they prepared to pass the physical readiness test. Not all cadets passed the exam but for those who did, they owe a debt of gratitude to Commander Peterson. And, for midshipmen to pass the exam, it meant that Pete had to work all times of the day, including starting his day at 4:30 a.m. to drill cadets.

Pushups, sit-ups, and running. Whatever it took to prepare them to pass the physical readiness test required by the military, the Commander was prepared to do.

Through his years in the military and his current role as assistant professor kinesiology at Cedarville, Pete has been passionate about the importance of health and physical fitness. He’s equally passionate about teaching, guiding, and equipping students to love it as well.

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Mark Weinstein

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Allied Health


Cedarville, stories, podcast, navy, fitness


Cedarville University


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