Joseph Hassett

Joey prepares for sports dietitian career at Iowa State

Joey Hassett discovered his passion for triathlons at 15 years old. His older brother decided to train for a triathlon, which inspired Joey to sign up for the IRONKIDS Triathlon.

“My oldest brother is big inspiration,” he said. “He’s a personal trainer and a triathlon coach. He always taught us to eat healthier to help enhance our performance.”

After his first triathlon, Joey became hooked. He participated in two more that same summer — finishing second at the Iowa Games and competing in the Iron Kids National Championship.

Even in college he finds time to compete in his favorite sport through the Iowa State Triathlon Club. 

“I love triathlons because you have to try to be an expert in three different disciplines,” he said. “You always strive to be better. It never gets easier; you just get faster.”

Joey’s love for triathlons and a healthy lifestyle sparked his desire to major in pre-diet and exercise, because diet and exercise play an integral role in an athlete’s performance. He chose Iowa State because of its acclaimed Dietetics program, which delves into all aspects of nutrition.

 “There is so much more to nutrition than people believe,” he said. “It’s amazing how complex and detailed nutrition is — and how it’s simplified to help the general public understand.”

In addition to his degree, Joey has set several goals for himself. After finishing first for Iowa State individually, he wants to win nationals with his fellow Iowa State team and make it to the podium. He also looks forward to running his first international race in the Netherlands next year.

Overall, Joey knows through hard work and determination he can achieve not only his academic goals, but his professional ones as well. Following graduation he aspires to become a sports dietitian at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs.

 “There is an incredible level of athletic ability needed to be a part of the Olympics,” he said. “If you’ve made it to that point in your career, you know you’ve really made it.”