Distinguished Alumnus Inspires Rowan's Class of 2013June 13, 2013
During Rowan University’s 88th Commencement ceremony on May 17, not only was the sun shining brightly, so, too, was each of our more than 2,200 graduates. In addition to welcoming Commencement speaker N.J. State Senate President Steve Sweeney and honorary Doctors of Humanities recipients Larry Salva ’77 and his wife, Rita, we had the pleasure of honoring 2013’s Distinguished Alumnus recipient, Shaun “Shaun T” Thompson.
Born Shaun Thompson, Shaun T earned a bachelor’s degree in Health & Exercise Science with a minor in dance from the University in 2001. He recalled coming to the University as an EOF/MAP student in 1996 and his motivation to succeed. “I told myself I would take this opportunity as far as I could take it,” he said, urging this year’s graduates to “Have an amazing day and an amazing life.”
Shaun worked in the corporate world as a health and fitness specialist/personal trainer, before being promoted to a health program manager at one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies, Wyeth. After living the life in the corporate health world, he branched out into commercial fitness and dance and worked for companies including Equinox.
Shaun continued to develop as a fitness trainer and coach and also danced in musical theater, television and movies. Riding on the heels of his successful dance career, Shaun was contacted by producers at Beachbody to create his own workout DVDs. His “Hip Hop Abs” workout was launched in February 2007 and quickly became America’s No. 1 fitness program on television.
His biggest accomplishment in the fitness world came in July of 2009, when “Insanity” hit the market. Insanity is a 60-day workout challenge that involves Max Interval Training. The most challenging workout Shaun has created, it is also one of the most difficult but effective workouts on the market today. It was soon followed by “Insanity: The Asylum.”
Currently living in New York City, Shaun has put his degrees to good use while striving to help people achieve their fitness and life goals. With international appearances and his workout programs’ ever-increasing success, he has created Shaun T Inc. to broaden his scope.
We are truly proud of each of our graduates and wish them well as they begin their lives after Rowan. We are prouder still when they come back as alumni to share their experiences and inspire generations of future graduates with their stories of success.
Thank you, Shaun T, and congratulations to all of our 2013 graduates.