Patricia Reger

Patricia Reger

Dean, College of Health and Sciences; Professor of Exercise Science

Dr. Patricia (Trish) Reger, PhD, PT is the Dean of the College of Health and Sciences (CHS), where the lives of individuals, families and communities are transformed through studies in science and healthcare professions.  The programs within CHS provide graduates with a rich educational experience, which equips them with the knowledge, skills and values for meaningful careers, advanced professional training and active roles in local and global communities. The integration of faith, reason and justice within the rigorous and dynamic curriculum adds a dimension to the educational experience that transforms students into graduates who are well prepared to understand and effectively address the future challenges, which they will face in this rapidly changing world.   

Dr. Reger assumed the dean position with many years of academic, clinical and administrative experience. She received a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Physical Therapy as well as a PhD in Kinesiology of Temple University. She has been in higher education for over seventeen years and joined Eastern in 2006. Her roles at Eastern University include Professor of Exercise Science, Chair of the Department of Kinesiology, and the Director of the Exercise Science Program. Prior to joining Eastern, Dr. Reger was an Instructor in the Physical Therapy program at Temple University.

As Dean of the College of Health and Science, Dr. Reger plans to move the college forward by developing programs that will bolster academic success and strong Christian leadership as well as creating external partnerships that will provide students with an enhanced academic experience and opportunities for growth outside the classroom. She enjoys working collaboratively with faculty, staff and students in preparing the next generation of health and social science professionals to positively impact individuals and communities.

Licensed in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey, she has 31 years of experience in physical therapy practice in multiple clinical environments. Working in a self-employed capacity, she serves as a consultant for the evaluation and treatment of pelvic and foot and ankle dysfunction. Dr. Reger has presented and published research in the cardiovascular benefits of exercise with works including poster and platform presentations, original research in journals such as the Journal of Applied Physiology and the American Journal of Physiology, Heart and Circulatory Physiology and International Journal of Exercise Science. Dr. Reger has also conducted student-guided research with her students in the exercise science program.    


B.S.  in Physical Therapy, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA
M.S. in Orthopedic Physical Therapy, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA
Ph.D. in Kinesiology, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA
At Eastern Since 2006

Courses Taught

Research Methods in Kinesiology; Physiology of Exercise; Exercise for Special Health Populations; Therapeutic Exercise; Therapeutic Modalities; Research in Exercise Science; Exercise and Aging; and Dance Anatomy and Kinesiology. 

Why I Teach at Eastern

It is without question that the integration of faith and learning is at the essence of education at Eastern University, and it is this integration of faith and learning that lead me to Eastern.  As an educator at Eastern University, I am able to prepare students for the vocation to which God has called them.  The educational philosophy at Eastern University allows my teaching to be shaped and formed by faith which in turn results in learning, and ultimately living, that is shaped and formed by faith.  Thus, it is my hope that as I integrate faith into the athletic training and exercise science curricula, students will continue to mature into professionals who demonstrate sound ethical judgment and respect of others that is grounded in Christian principles of reason and justice.  

Research Interests

Dr. Reger’s area of research involves the study of the influence of exercise on myocardial protection in a model of spontaneous hypertension, and the influence of spirituality on the management of childhood obesity.  Her collaborative research in the field of cardiovascular physiology has been published in a variety of peer reviewed journals and she has presented her research at both regional and national conferences.

Original Research
  • Reger PO, Kolwicz SC, Libonati JR.  Acute exercise exacerbates ischemia-induced diastolic rigor in hypertensive myocardium.  SpringerPlus 2012, 1:46.
  • Kolwicz SC, MacDonnell SM, Renna BF, Reger PO, Seqqat R, Rafiq K, Kendrick ZV, Houser SR, Sabri A, Libonati JR.  Left ventricular remodeling with exercise in hypertension.  Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2009 Oct; 297(4):H1361-8. Epub 2009 Aug 7.
  • MacDonnell SM, Kubo H, Harris DM, Chen X, Berretta R, Barbe MF, Kolwicz S, Reger PO, Eckhart A, Renna BF, Koch WJ, Houser SR, Libonati JR.  Calcineurin inhibition normalizes beta-adrenergic responsiveness in the spontaneously hypertensive rat.  Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2007 Nov; 293(5):H3122-9. Epub 2007 Sep 7.
  • Renna BF, MacDonnell SM, Reger PO, Crabbe DL, Houser SR, Libonati JR.  Relative systolic dysfunction in female spontaneously hypertensive rat myocardium.  J Appl Physiol. 2007 Jul;103(1):353-8. Epub 2007 Apr 12.
  • Reger, P.O.  Barbe, M.F., Amin, M., Renna,B.F., Hewston, L.A., MacDonnell, S. M., Houser, and S. R., Libonati, J. R. Myocardial Hypoperfusion/Reperfusion Tolerance With Exercise Training In Hypertension. Journal of Applied Physiology, 100 (2):  541-547, 2006.
  • Renna, B.F., Kubo, H., MacDonnell, S.M.  Crabbe, D.L., Reger, P.O., Houser, SR., and Libonat, J.R. Enhanced Acidotic Myocardial  Ca 2+ Responsiveness with Training in Hypertension.  Med Sci Sports & Exercise, 38(5): 847-855, 2006.
  • MacDonnell, S.M., Kubo, H., Crabbe, D.L., Renna, B. F., Reger, P.O., Mohara, J., Smithwick, L.A. Koch, W.J., Houser, S.R., and Libonati, J.R..  Improved Myocardial Beta-Adrenergic Responsiveness and Signaling with Exercise Training in Hypertension.  Circulation 111:  3264-3272, 2005.
Professional Presentations
  • “Acute Exercise Worsens Myocardial Ischemia-Reperfusion Tolerance in Hypertension.” American College of Sports Medicine’s Conference on Integrative Physiology of Exercise, Indianapolis, IN, September 29, 2006.
  • “Myocardial Hypoperfusion/Reperfusion Tolerance with Exercise Training in Hypertension.”  Student-Faculty Research Symposium, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA, December 1, 2005.
  • “Compensatory Hypertrophy Secondary to Pressure and Volume Overload Improves Myocardial Hypoperfusion/Reperfusion Tolerance.”Annual Meeting of American College of Sports Medicine, Nashville, TN, June, 2005.
  • “Exercise Training and Coronary Resistance in Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats.” Annual Meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine, Indianapolis, IN, May, 2004.
Article in Review
  • Kolwicz, S., MacDonnell, S.M., Renna, B.F., Reger, P.O., Seqqat, R., Rafiq, K., Kendrick, Z., Houser, S.R., and Libonati, J.R.  Left ventricular remodeling with exercise in hypertension.  American Journal of Physiology Heart and Circulation (in review).