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Full-Time Faculty


EunJeong Lee


Dr. Lee has taught Biomechanics, Exercise Physiology, and Kinesiology courses at Concordia University Irvine since Fall 2020. Prior to Concordia, Dr. Lee was a research scientist in the Sarver Heart Center at the University of Arizona and a senior researcher at the Korea Institute of Machinery & Materials (KIMM) in South Korea. She has a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Ewha Womans University, a Master of Education in Physical Education from Seoul National University in South Korea, and a Ph.D. in Kinesiology (Concentration in Biomechanics) from University of Calgary, Canada. Dr. Lee has published 18 original research articles in peer-reviewed journals and over 20 refereed publications in conference proceedings in Biomechanics and Physiology. She has numerous experiences in biomechanical testing of skeletal and cardiac muscles from cellular to whole body levels. Dr. Lee’s current research interest is the mechanism of the preservation of eccentric strength in older adults or aged muscle.

Dr. Lee resides in Cypress with her husband Joo and daughter Minah. They are members of the Thanksgiving Church in Buena Park and enjoy being outdoors and going to the Sea World, San Diego.


Dr. Nathan Meier


Dr. Nathan Meier moved to Irvine from Ames, IA, where he completed his B.S. '06 (Business: Management of Information Systems; German), M.S. '13 (Kinesiology: Exercise Psychology) and Ph.D. '18 (Kinesiology: Physical Activity Epidemiology). Dr. Meier was the project manager or recruitment coordinator for a number of research studies in the Physical Activity Epidemiology Lab (Dept. of Kinesiology, ISU) under Dr. Duck-chul Lee, his advisor. Each semester the lab utilized around 25-50 undergraduate research assistants, several masters students, and a postdoctoral fellow.

Dr. Meier has published a number of research articles relating to the physiological responses to stress relief methods in university students, validity of consumer-based physical activity monitors, the relationship of physical activity and fitness on the development of glaucoma, validation of multiple methods of body composition measurement for screening age-related loss of muscle mass, strength and function (Sarcopenia), and the relationship between physical activity, fitness, strength and muscle mass with sarcopenia.

Dr. Meier and his wife Sarah enjoy being outdoors hiking, running, and biking and promote lifestyle as medicine through healthy choices around diet and exercise. Dr. Meier is also accomplished in Judo, earning his 4th degree black belt in 2017, and leads the CU Judo Club. While he was in Iowa, Dr. Meier was an active leader of the Iowa State University Cyclone Martial Arts clubs, serving as Judo Club President, Assistant Instructor, and National's Team Coach. In addition to his athletic pursuits, Dr. Meier has been active in church ministry serving as a youth group teacher and director for 9 years at the Ames Korean United Methodist church and playing acoustic guitar on the worship team at Christ Community Church.

Dean, School of Arts and Sciences

Terry Olson


Dr. Terry Olson enters his eight year as full-time faculty at Concordia University Irvine after previously serving as a Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of Texas-Arlington. He began his educational career as an elementary physical education teacher in both Las Cruces, NM and Mansfield, TX. He currently serves as the Dean of the School of Health and Human Sciences following appointments as Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences and Chair of the department of Exercise and Sports Science. Dr. Olson’s educational background includes a Bachelor of Science degree from New Mexico State University and a Master of Science and Ph.D. from the University of New Mexico where he assumed roles as both research and teaching assistant in the Physical Education Teacher Education (PETE) Program. Dr. Olson’s current research emphasis is on self-regulation and critical thinking of pre-service teachers in physical education and he continues to serve in the classroom where he teaches Motor Development.  

Dr. Olson continues to work closely with the community as an advocate for health and wellness. He currently provides health and leadership education for numerous local non-profit organizations on their wellness initiatives and is a founder of the BREATH Foundation offering health and wellness support to the underserved population in Orange County as well as our military members at Camp Pendleton.

Prior to Dr. Olson’s academic career, he served in the U.S. Navy as an aircraft structural mechanic on FA 18 Hornets aboard the USS Independence aircraft carrier stationed in Atsugi, Japan.

Dr. Olson resides in Aliso Viejo with his wife Michele and two children, Tyler and Macey. They are members of the Light of Christ Lutheran Church in Irvine. 

Degrees Earned

  • University of New Mexico, Ph.D in Physical Education, Sports and Exercise Science 2009
  • University of New Mexico, M.S. in Physical Education Pedagogy 2005
  • New Mexico State University, B.S. in Physical Education 2000

Chair, Kinesiology Department

Vance Tammen


Dr. Vance Tammen has served in multiple campus instructional and administrative roles since coming to Concordia in 2001. He is currently the Chair of the Kinesiology department in the School of Health and Human Sciences. His educational background includes a Bachelor of Science and Ph.D. from University of Illinois and Master of Science from Kansas State University. Dr. Tammen teaches motor learning, sport psychology and historical and socio-cultural foundations of sport and physical education. His research specialty is the social psychology of sport and physical activity. His main areas of research include 1) motivation of coaches and athletes and 2) wellness across the life span. He has written 3 book chapters, 6 refereed journal publications, over 30 refereed publications in conference proceeding, over 30 original service publications, has conducted over 65 refereed scholarly presentations, conducted over 40 sport psychology service presentations, and has done thousands of hours of sport psychology service to athletes, coaches, & organizations. 

Prior to God’s call to Concordia University, Dr. Tammen was an Assistant Professor at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana, and prior to that he was Lecture of Sport Psychology at Victoria University in Melbourne, Australia. He also taught at the University of Illinois-Urbana and at Kansas State University. He did his sport psychology internship at the United States Olympic Training Center at Colorado Springs. Dr. Tammen was influential in the curriculum development of the Concordia University Master’s in Coaching and Athletic Administration program.

Dr. Tammen played football into his early 30s, but he now enjoys all forms of sport and physical activity.  

Dr. Tammen resides in San Clemente with his wife Renee, kids Casey and Shelby. He enjoys fine wine, fine food, cooking, travel, and he is an ardent fan of the Fighting Illini and Chicago Cubs. 

Degrees Earned

  • Ph.D. University of Illinois, Urbana, IL
  • M.S. Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS
  • B.S. University of Illinois, Urbana, IL


Michael Ryan


Professor Michael Ryan brings a unique blend of performance and rehabilitation expertise to Concordia University Irvine's kinesiology program. His professional journey is marked by a variety of roles, including serving as a strength and conditioning coach at high school, collegiate, and professional sport levels. Additionally, his role as an exercise physiologist in wellness settings has honed his acumen in conducting thorough assessments and developing tailored lifestyle interventions for diverse populations. This background, coupled with his work in geriatric rehabilitation and health behavior change, underscores his ability to provide holistic care to individuals across the lifespan.

Beyond his practical experience, Professor Ryan is both a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and an Athletic Training Certified (ATC) healthcare professional. His academic journey includes a Bachelor of Science in Exercise Physiology from California State University, Chico, and a Master of Science in Athletic Training from Concordia University Irvine. Currently, as a Ph.D. candidate at New Mexico State University, he is conducting research on sport pedagogy and the incidence of injuries in student-athletes.

His research contributions encompass a wide range, including authoring a book chapter on athlete-centered pedagogy in strength and conditioning coaching, publishing a study on a nutrition intervention aimed at improving body composition in high school athletes, and contributing to research in physical education teacher education.

In the classroom, Professor Ryan embraces a student-centered teaching philosophy, emphasizing experiential learning to equip students for real-world challenges across the diverse fields of kinesiology.

Residing in Laguna Niguel with his wife, Rosemary, Professor Ryan enjoys surfing, grappling sports, and playing music in his leisure time.

Adjunct Faculty

Adjunct Faculty

Ellie Johnson


Ellie Johnson has a positive association with Concordia University Irvine. It has been a part of Ellie Johnson’s lifelong growth and learning. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science with an emphasis on exercise science and coaching and a minor in global studies. During her undergraduate studies, Ellie was a standout on the women’s tennis team and she studied with the Around the World program. She continued her higher education at Concordia and earned her Master’s Degree in coaching while serving as the assistant coach for the women’s tennis team. Soon after she completed her Master’s Degree, Ellie was hired as head coach for women’s tennis at Westmont College. For five years she coached the Warriors and lead them to a conference championship. During her tenure at Westmont, she was voted coach of the year three times. She also developed and taught inclusive PE classes and facilitated the campus weight room.

Ellie has been an adjunct professor at Concordia for three years. She brings experience, knowledge and enthusiasm to each class she teaches. She has a sincere desire to help students realize their academic and professional goals.

Adjunct Faculty

Steven Newman


Professor Newman has been teaching in the Kinesiology Dept. for Concordia University of Irvine since Spring of 2017. He is an adjunct Professor who brings a practical knowledge of training to the classroom. He serves as a full time Strength and Conditioning coach at a private sports training facility called Pro Sport. Prior to his time their he has spent 15+ training at private sports training centers as well as over 5 years as a Collegiate Strength Coach at both ASU and Long Beach State University. He brings a wealth of knowledge on how to incorporate science into training.

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