August 25, 2022

SLU AT Program Welcomes Back Dr. Nathan Jarman as Teaching Faculty

The Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program is excited to welcome back Dr. Nathan Jarman as an instructor in our program.  He is here as a part of a collaboration between SSM Health Sports Medicine and the Doisy College of Health Sciences.  He will be course coordinator for MAT 5100 - Kinesiology in the Fall and MAT 5500 - Rehabilitation in Athletics Training I in the spring and will collaborate with other courses as well as continuing education activities.

Nathan is a native Missourian from Holden.  He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Exercise Science with an emphasis in Athletic Training from the University of Central Missouri.  He then obtained his Master’s Degree in Athletic Training from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center.  Nathan has 14 years of clinical practice experience, predominately in the high school setting, but has also worked in the collegiate setting.  He is an active member of the NATA and the Missouri Brain Injury Association and has presented post-professional courses in anatomy, concussion, hip pathology and lumbo-pelvic dysfunction.  Nathan completed his PhD in Rehabilitation Sciences from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center.  His research concentration is concussion, posturography and musculoskeletal conditions.  His wife, Severyn, is a SLU alumnus and Physician Assistant in orthopedics.

August 18, 2022

SLU AT Student Experiences Rich Learning Environment in Industrial Setting at the Kennedy Space Center

SLU AT Clinical Site Spotlight - RehabWorks/NASA, Kennedy Space Center
By: Muharem Komic (MAT Class of 2023)

This summer I have had a great opportunity to gain clinical experience with RehabWorks at NASA Kennedy Space Center in Florida. I was fortunate enough to be working with Mary Kirkland ATC and Nicole Yacobino ATC everyday at the clinic. They are great preceptors and share their knowledge of the profession extremely well. They have shown me and taught me so much, allowing me to gain knowledge in assessment, documentation, rehab, and modalities. I was not the only student here, there were two other students from other universities here as well. One of them left before I began, but it was nice to work with other students who have had similar experiences to the ones that SLU offers. We shared our experiences and learned from each other and being able to do that was great.

It has been an interesting adjustment going from rehabbing young high school and collegiate athletes, to rehabbing older industrial athletes. Understanding doctor referrals and protocols and implementing them into the patient's treatment plan, especially if the patient is post operative. Along with being able to apply my own knowledge from past experiences and be able to implement them. A typical day consists of preparing for a patient's care or for a new patient. After treatments we make sure that everything is clean and ready for the next patient.

My days consisted of observing and performing assessments and treatments. I have also been documenting every single day and have been improving that skill profoundly. Something that I have observed and learned is a new modality called the cold laser. The laser has no thermal effects and can be stimulatory, promoting healing effects, or inhibitory, reducing pain. Being exposed to patients with limited mobility was new and learning new exercises to assist them has been educational.

Being able to work with this staff and these patients has given me a great experience that has allowed me to grow in the profession as an Athletic Training Student. Every day feels different and I did not know what to expect coming in and now my expectations have been passed then I could imagine. My favorite thing so far is witnessing patient progression and them being happy. This has been a great experience so far and I am looking forward to what the rest of the rotation will bring.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have an immersive field experience in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their experience.

August 17, 2022

SLU AT Student Develops Skills in Patient Care Collaborating with Preceptor/Alum at Bluetail Medical Group

SLU AT Clinical Site Spotlight - Bluetail Medical Group
By: Stacie Galo (MAT Class of 2023)

This summer I had the wonderful opportunity to gain experience at Bluetail Medical group! I had previously completed a general medical rotation during the spring semester there, and knew I wanted to go back to gain more insight into what it was like working in an orthopedic office as an Athletic Trainer. My preceptor, Brianna (LaBarbera) Diab MAT, ATC, was a SLU grad so it was great to be able to connect with her. She works with Dr. Christopher Wolf DO who specializes in concussion assessment as well as evaluating workers compensation patients. Bluetail is known for their non-operative treatments, with Dr. Wolf performing musculoskeletal manipulations as well as performing PRP and stem cell regenerative treatments. 

To name a few, Bri’s role was to perform initial evaluations, do follow up interviews, and assist with treatments such as preparing the equipment and performing some of the injections to assist Dr. Wolf. She was very eager to show me her role in the office and walk me through her responsibilities.

Initially I was mainly observing these treatments, and going in with Bri to do initial evaluations or follow ups, but when I gained the confidence to do it myself, I was the one who would room patients, do their initial intake, perform any evaluations I deemed necessary, and then report my findings back to the doctor before we both went back in to do the final assessments and treatment plans for the patients. Dr. Wolf utilized ultrasound to assist with the PRP treatments, as well as to confirm or explore possible musculoskeletal diagnosis. 

Although my time at Bluetail was short, I really enjoyed my experience. I felt my biggest improvements this summer were gaining more confidence with patient interactions as well as my initial evaluation skills, I also gained a lot more insight in concussion and TBI assessment and treatment. I am excited to translate these into my future practice as a PY2 and in the future as an Athletic Trainer!

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have an immersive field experience in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their experience.

August 12, 2022

SLU AT Program Announces New Scholarships and Grants for Graduate-Entry Students

Welcome! Bienvenidos! Bienvenue! 

Now located in one of the greatest sports and medical cities in the United States, the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program is welcoming new graduate students in St. Louis, Missouri. New scholarships are available. Accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) since 2010, 

SLU is among the most established Athletic Training programs in the world and preparing U.S. and international health professionals. You will join numerous Saint Louis University Athletic Training alumni in the world today – carrying forward a mission of interprofessional excellence and service to others to improve the health of individuals and communities.

At SLU, you can count on your wellness and academic achievement being supported by faculty and staff. Since we started, our program has an overall 100% pass rate the Board of Certification (BOC) Examination. You can also benefit from the University’s recent investments in student well-being, such as recreational programs, mental health supports, and more. 

You will be part of an academic medical center community. The medical center campus includes top-rated schools – School of Medicine, School of Nursing, College for Public Health and Social Justice, and Doisy College of Health Sciences (Department of Physical Therapy and Athletic Training, where the SLU AT Program resides). You will be mentored by physicians, athletic trainers, and other health professionals through clinical experience, classes, research projects and voluntary service learning. While you practice new skills, you will be supporting the athletic training needs of professional athletes, college programs, high schools, and community events across the region. 

The SLU Athletic Training Program is committed to placing students with sites and preceptors who love teaching and offering students hands-on experience. Click here to learn more about Saint Louis University and your opportunities as a student in the Master of Athletic Training Program:

Scholarship Support and Tuition

You will be joining a University and College that will invest in you – literally. All graduate students starting in 2023 are eligible for up to $12,000 in scholarship awards 
  • $10,000 Sports Medicine Scholarship 
  • $2,000 Magis Community Service Grant
  • Other scholarship awards may be available from the University as well 
  • All admitted students are considered for research assistantships and teaching assistantships. 
The total tuition for the 2-year Master of Athletic Training program is fixed at $55,000. With full scholarship support, your net cost is $43,000 (or an average of $21,500 per year) or less. The program is eligible for federal student loan support and our Office of Student Financial Services will guide you through loan options. With fixed package pricing at Saint Louis University, there is no cost increase in your second year. 

Admission Requirements 
  • Most successful applicants have an undergraduate grade point average of 3.00 or better on a 4.00 scale. 
  • Completion of prerequisite college coursework.
  • GRE scores are not required 
Applicants that do not meet the regular requirements, but who demonstrate the potential for success in the program and field may still be admitted on a case-by-case basis. 

Admission Deadlines
  • Priority deadline: January 1st Second deadline: April 1st 
  • The program begins in May 2023. 
  • The number of students selected each year is limited. 
Prerequisite Coursework 
  • One semester biology with lab 
  • One semester chemistry with lab 
  • One semester physics with lab 
  • Two semesters anatomy and physiology or equivalent 
  • Exercise physiology
  • General psychology 
  • Statistics 
  • Medical terminology
SLU offers admission to applicants who still need to finish prerequisite courses. These situations are handled on a case-by-case basis 

Contact the SLU AT Program 

August 03, 2022

SLU AT Student Values Opportunity to Reconnect with Preceptor at Edwardsville High School

SLU AT Clinical Site Spotlight - Edwardsville High School
By: Alex Davis (MAT Class of 2023)

For my summer field experience, I am back at Edwardsville High School with preceptor Katie Hamilton ATC. This clinical experience is a little different than when I was with her in the fall, but in some ways, it is still the same. I have been getting there at around 6:30 every morning to help with 7am football practice which happens Monday through Friday. But besides getting up very early in the morning, it is great to be there working with the athletes and Katie again. 

I have been taking on more evaluations and taping I can take just for more practice. I have even started to learn about the administrative side of being an athletic trainer. While it is not as fun as doing some of the other things, it is still an important side to learn about the job. 

This was a great experience for me because I was able to display how my skills have grown while still learning from Katie. I will continue at Edwardsville High School for the rest of July and then I will be moving on to my fall clinical placement. Overall this time around, I am more confident in my abilities and Katie has even noticed it as well. 

I am happy to be here and excited about working on my craft with Katie once again!

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have an immersive field experience in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their experience.

July 30, 2022

SLU AT Student Grows Professionally Through Immersive Clinical Experience at the University of North Texas

SLU AT Clinical Site Spotlight - University of North Texas Athletics
By: Giovanna Charles (MAT Class of 2023)

The University of North Texas (UNT) has been an exciting experience for me so far! I enjoy taking care of the women’s basketball team, learning from my preceptor, Nicole Hergert ATC, and other Athletic Trainers at UNT as well as the other immersion students there this summer. Already, I have learned so much about modalities I have never seen or heard of before. I have been able to watch another AT dry needle, use and help me understand different modalities to perform on athletes and learn about all the paperwork and documentation AT's must do. 

On my first day at UNT we performed physical exams for a variety of different sports after a refresher on how to take blood pressure and how an EKG was performed. After the first day, I got right into practices, strength and conditioning, recovery as well as being able to watch and help with some rehabs from previous injuries. A typical day for the women’s basketball team at UNT is in the morning, the girls come in to get treatment prior to practice then we head to the gym where we tape the girls that need to get taped. Nicole’s rule is that all upperclassmen can get taped and underclassmen must put braces on. Once practice is done they head to weights. Nicole and I stay in most times to make sure they are doing exercises right as well as letting the strength coach know if someone needs accommodations. Finally, when they are done for weights some come into the athletic training room to get treatment such as ice, stem, or game ready if needed and then we do it all over again the next day. 

I was also fortunate enough to work with the men's basketball team here at UNT for a couple weeks which was surprisingly a little bit different than working with the women's team. I was really glad to be able to work with both teams to see the differences between the two. I’ve been able to work hands on with both the men's and women's basketball teams. I've gotten to evaluate both teams and perform special tests, MMT, as well as perform off the court concussion protocol followed by a SCAT5. I got to use different modalities that I'm unfamiliar with on different athletes which has helped me understand the machines better. My favorite modality to use on athletes is the Hivamat. Hivamat utilizes an intermittent electrostatic field that creates oscillation. Those electrostatic waves create a sort of kneading effect within the damaged tissues that help reduce pain, relieve pain, and can also help relax the muscles while also restoring blood supply to the injured area. 

Everyday is new and has brought new experiences that I will carry along with me in the future. As my time at UNT continues to grow, Nicole has allowed me to do more things with her athletes and understands my role better and trusts me. I enjoy every minute at UNT and can not wait to see how I continue to grow. 

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have an immersive field experience in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their experience.

July 29, 2022

SLU AT Student Gains Confidence and Practices New Techniques with the Schaumburg Boomers

SLU AT Clinical Site Spotlight - Illinois Bone and Joint Institute/Schaumburg Boomers Baseball Club
By: Emily Haley (MAT Class of 2023)
My summer field experience in professional baseball with preceptor Sammy Fluck ATC and the Frontier League Schaumburg Boomers has challenged me  professionally and clinically in ways my other sites have not. Not only is the level of play  the highest I have been part of, but the treatments the players receive is different than what I’ve typically done at other clinical sites. We hardly use any modalities, and as the  players are averaging six games a week, we more so deal with overuse injuries,  soreness, and stiffness. Massage, scraping or IASTM, and cupping are the primary forms of treatment utilized. I have learned new soft-tissue techniques such as scar  tissue mobilizations and rock tape flossing and enhanced some of the stretching  techniques I already know.  

Beyond soft-tissue treatment, many of the players request maintenance rehab  programs and some players need programs developed for their current injuries. Sammy challenges me to be creative in coming up with exercises as we do not have a ton of weights or resistance bands to use. Along with rehab and treatment skills, I have also assisted with a more emergent situation of a heat exhaustion related incident. Of  course, it is not a situation you ever want an athlete to be in, but it was a great learning opportunity from start to finish with how Sammy and I followed cooling protocols and  eventually transferred care to EMS.  

Working in professional baseball has overall been a great learning experience and I am enjoying my time with the Boomers. The players are amazing to work with and  love to encourage me to make my own decisions as an AT which helps build my confidence. A major highlight was meeting up with the team at the Gateway Grizzlies near St. Louis and experiencing an away game as well as being in the opposing dugout of my peers Olivia Mani and Jordan Hyink.

I am grateful for Illinois Bone and Joint Institute for crafting such an incredible summer field experience for me with the Boomers. 

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have an immersive field experience in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their experience.

July 28, 2022

SLU AT Student Appreciates Clinical Learning Experience with Men's Basketball at UW-Milwaukee

SLU AT Clinical Site Spotlight - University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Athletics
By: Alexander Smith (MAT Class of 2023)

Change has been the theme surrounding my time at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee with men’s basketball team this summer. There is a new head coach, nearly 10 new athletes joined the team, and I get to experience the changes with a new preceptor. My new preceptor, Aaron Haselhorst, ATC, has given me opportunities to learn how to manage a NCAA Division I basketball team, even during the summer. Each chance I have gotten, I am learning new ways to manage pathologies, more than evaluating pathologies. 

Days and duties at UWM are consistent. Upon my arrival at the athletic training room, I help get the fluids set up prior to practice. I then wait for any athletes to arrive in the training room for a pre-practice stretching or manual massage. After all athletes get prepared, we make our way to the courts to watch practice. For post-practice, the athletes get post-practice treatments, whether it be an ice bath, Normatec treatment, or ice bags. Some days do include more soft tissue massage like cupping, Graston, or even dry needling when athletes need it. I am fortunate enough to have learned how to perform cupping massage as well as HIVAMAT treatment. These types of skills are what I look forward to having in my repertoire of treatment options. 

Each day has brought me new experiences and ways to treat my future athletes. I have gotten the chance to perform cup, treat, and stretch athletes prior to practice. Even when it has only been two weeks since my arrival U of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, each member of both the athletic training team and basketball team has understood my role. Aaron has given me many opportunities for me to learn and possible add in my athletic training toolbox. This experience has been exciting for me since I arrived at UWM. I look forward for what the rest of the summer has to offer with my time at UWM. 

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have an immersive field experience in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their experience.

July 27, 2022

SLU AT Student Builds Clinical Skills with Support of Preceptors at Bowling Green State University

SLU AT Clinical Site Spotlight - Bowling Green State University Sports Medicine
By: Mason Remeis (MAT Class of 2023)

Over the summer I have been able to get insight through clinical experience with a collegiate football program, this time at the NCAA Division 1 level at Bowling Green State University.  There are a total of 3 athletic trainers on staff for the football team alone, two full time and one who splits time between the college and the local high school.  I have worked very closely under the two full time AT's, the Head Athletic Trainer Dani Coppes ATC and the Assistant Athletic Trainer David Florea ATC.  With two full time AT's on staff for the team, I have been able to see how they work together to make sure everything each of them has the necessary information about each athlete in case one of them is to spend more time with them one day, and the other one works with them the following day.  They have also formed great relationships with the coaching staff and players, which has created an atmosphere full of trust and respect on all ends.  Both AT's have had different experiences at their prior positions, so I have been able to learn some different things from each of them.

So far this summer I have been able to care for athletes who are on off-season rehab plans.  Since this summer consists of lifting and conditioning as well as non-contact practices, here have not been any major injuries that have occurred during my time here so far, except for some muscle strains and similar level injuries.  I do think that it has been beneficial to get to see what it is like for athletes at different levels of their rehab plans.  I have seen how they approach a lot of different treatments and a lot of it has been like similar to I have experienced at my other clinical sites, but some have been more common here.  Tool-assisted massage and cupping is something that I can expect to do about one of each every day I am there.  Although I have seen both before, these techniques have been used a good amount more at Bowling Green.  I was also able to assist with administering dry needling with electrical stimulation which I have not experienced before.  I have been able to get a lot of experience with treatments and it has allowed me the opportunity to keep building up my strengths.

When looking at all my experiences up to this point, I have continued to see how each AT has their own way of functioning.  I get excited to go into clinical each day because of the AT's and players at Bowling Green.  Since the beginning of the summer, the Dani instantly put her trust in me and made it clear that I was not restricted in any way with my experiences here.  I have been able to pick up any treatment or take a history for any athlete that comes into the room.  This freedom has allowed me to see what both my strengths and weaknesses are at this point in my professional phase.  

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have an immersive field experience in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their experience.

July 26, 2022

SLU AT Students Enjoy Learning in Professional Baseball with the Gateway Grizzlies

SLU AT Clinical Site Spotlight - Gateway Grizzlies Baseball Club
By: Olivia Mani and Jordan Hyink (MAT Class of 2023)

Our summer field experience is with the Gateway Grizzlies, a Frontier League baseball team. Our preceptor Geof Manzo ATC, LAT has been working as the team’s athletic trainer for 19 seasons, so he knows exactly the best way to run a training room in this league. We have found our own groove in his system by working with the team in the Health Education Center. This center provides an appropriate environment to provide complete and adequate care to our athletes during their stretch of home games. 

Working with professional baseball at this level challenges an athletic trainer’s ability to adapt. Often times management is trading or releasing players, which, for us, means we lose athletes we have been working with through recovery and gain new ones who need us to pick up their treatment plan from where they left off with their previous team. Another challenge is centralizing our focus to soft tissue work. Most of what we do is related to therapeutic massage, instrument soft tissue mobilization, or cupping. This gives us a unique opportunity to hone in our skills that are required when working in this particular setting.

Both of us have the desire to have a career working with baseball in the future, which makes this experience that much more special to us. This serves as a perfect opportunity for us to take a look into what the culture is like in a higher level of competition in this sport. So far, we have been able to immerse ourselves into the role as an athletic trainer in this league with a large commitment of hours and care for our athletes. We look forward to the rest of our summer and everything that we’re about to learn. 

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have an immersive field experience in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their experience.

July 24, 2022

SLU AT Student Sees an Interprofessional Approach to Care for Professional Athletes with Minnesota United FC

SLU AT Clinical Site Spotlight - Minnesota United Football Club
By: Lauren Swords (MAT Class of 2023)

This summer I have had the opportunity to work with Minnesota’s MLS team, Minnesota United FC. I have been mostly assigned to the United Next Pro and Academy teams. These teams have allowed me to be surrounded by professional athletes while still getting hands-on experience. I attend practice every day and assist with the rehab of our players. A new rehab technique I’ve been able to observe is dry needling which I have been super interested by and would like to explore certification in the future. 

It has been very interesting to see how the team operates at a national level. Since travel is a big part of the season, I’ve gotten to see how my preceptors pack their kits for long vs short stays and seen how every level of the club is all-hands on deck to make sure transitions go smoothly. 

Additionally, I have loved seeing the “it takes a village” aspect of the professional level. I have been able to work with sports science professionals, nutritionists, equipment managers, and physical therapists for the first time as a team. I am looking forward to the rest of my rotation and potentially traveling with Next Pro. 

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have an immersive field experience in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their experience.

June 13, 2022

SLU AT Student Experiences Clinical and Professional Growth with Mizzou Football

SLU AT Clinical Site Spotlight - University of Missouri Columbia
By: Eldwin Neritani (MAT Class of 2023)

During my clinical experience with Mizzou Football, I have been fortunate to work with the athletic training staff here. I have worked exclusively with the football team so far with my time here and I have learned a lot. I have been able to apply my own knowledge and learning to my everyday tasks to help the athletes and gain a good hands-on experience during my time here. Being able to work with this staff and these athletes has given me a great experience that I have found to be extremely valuable to my growth in the profession as well.

With my responsibilities starting with morning practices, I have been able to get a good on field experience learning and seeing how a NCAA Division 1 football team works in real time. Whether that is practice, weight-lifting, or during their rehab sessions, I have experienced all parts of it and have learned so much about every different environment that I am in while interacting with these athletes. Becoming part of a new environment and learning the dynamics between players and training staff has been very insightful for me, and being able to be hands on through the whole process has allowed me the chance to also get myself to be part of this dynamic. Being able to treat these athletes with the vast amount of different equipment Mizzou possesses has been very interesting, and has given me the freedom to really let my creativity and previous experiences dictate how and what path the athlete and I want to take to treat their injuries.

Mizzou has provided me many experiences in all aspects of athletic training; from on-field practices and injury prevention to injury assessment and rehabilitation. I have been able to learn and grow through the training staff and learn through their methods and practices what best can suit me. This has been a great experience so far, and I am excited to see what the rest of the clinical rotation has in store.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have an immersive field experience in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their experience.

May 23, 2022

SLU AT Students Receive Degrees at 2022 Graduation Ceremonies

The Saint Louis University Master of Athletic Training Class of 2022 graduates were recognized on Friday, May 20, 2022 in the Doisy College of Health Sciences Precommencement Ceremony at Chaifetz Arena.

Master of Athletic Training Class of 2022
Maddie Cavanaugh
Mason Cotterel 
Amra Kardasevic
Sydney Nash
Brittany Risko
Michael Ryan

SLU AT Program Director Dr. Anthony Breitbach also hooded MAT graduate Brittany Risko's service dog "Penelope" with an honorary master's hood.

Students from the SLU MAT Class of 2023 in the 3+2 MAT program also received Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science degrees.

Degrees were officially conferred at the SLU University Commencement on Saturday, May 2021, 2022 at Chaifetz Arena.

May 20, 2022

SLU AT Student Engages in Diverse On-campus Opportunities

New PY1 AT Student Blog Post - Caroline Miller (MAT Class of 2024)

This semester in MAT 3000 I really enjoyed the opportunities I got to do for my direct observation hours. My opportunities included shadowing ATs right here at Saint Louis University and at the NCAA division 2 wrestling championships hosted right on campus in Chaifetz Arena!

The athletic trainers I shadowed here at SLU were Elena Melillo ATC, Maddie Bozych MAT ATC, and Gwyn Brown MAT, ATC. While shadowing Elena I got to learn about what she does on game days with SLU womens basketball including treatment before the game and during half time. She let me know the injury status of her athletes, what she’s given them for treatment, and the most common injuries she sees with this sport. While shadowing Gwyn Brown, I got to observe her and Maddie Cavanaugh (both pictured), her PY1 student, at SLU softball games! I learned about the most common injuries seen with softball players and got to see what treatments players are given before, during, and between games! Fortunately at both of these experiences, none of the players were injured during games.

The coolest experience I had this semester was at the NCAA division II wrestling championships. I got to shadow PYs Eldwin Neritani and Mason Cotterel, and watch them work with other athletic trainers from the event. Along with specifically shadowing them I also got to talk to athletic trainers from other universities or other settings and learn about their experiences in their undergrad, professional years, and at their places of work. I was also able to talk to fellow junior student Grace Golembiewski and other students in SLU’s MAT program.  

I learned that there are many settings that I could work in as an athletic trainer. I’m extremely excited to be able to practice my skills and demonstrate my knowledge as a professional student in our program this fall!

This is one of a series of blog posts written by students entering the professional phase of the SLU AT Program as a part of MAT 3000 - AT Student Development II.

May 19, 2022

SLU AT Students Enjoy Learning and Mentoring from Older Students in the Program

New PY1 AT Student Blog Post - Mark Romero and Michael Patino (MAT Class of 2024)

Mark Romero

This semester I had the opportunity to observe Katie Wissing and Olivia Mani under their preceptor Dean Tiffany ATC at John Burroughs School. I went to JBS and observed them after school one day where I observed them during two lacrosse games, soccer practice, and a baseball game. I was able to observe the relationships that they have developed with the athletes and staff at the school throughout the year. I was impressed with the trust that the athletes had in Katie and Olivia to provide them care and treatment. Before going out to the fields, I was able to observe Katie use electrical stim while Olivia was working on some strengthening exercises with another athlete. I went back for a track meet early in the morning during the weekend . At the meet I was able to see common injuries that track athletes experience like scrapes, muscle cramps, and shin splints. I also saw the different ways Katie and Olivia approached these injuries and how they worked with athletes and sometimes parents regarding the issues. I was overall very impressed with John Burroughs school and the work Dean, Katie, and Olivia have done.

Michael Patino

As we prepare to enter the professional phase of the Athletic Training program, we have covered various types of modalities and scenarios in class an Athletic Trainer might encounter on the field.  Each day we would go to class and learn new techniques ATs use to treat injuries in theory but never in action.  However, being able to visit clinical sites and observing ATs in action really helped to see the whole picture.  This semester I had the opportunity to gain experience at the college level, visiting other SLU Athletic Training students already in the professional phase as well as their preceptors.  While visiting different clinical sites I was able to see my preceptors use different types of modalities (such as therapy, cupping, heat/ice, electrical stim, taping) firsthand which helped to reinforce what we’re learning in class.  Most of my experiences at clinical sites were spent in the AT room however there were some gamedays and special events where I was able to help with pre and post set up.  While I was not allowed to participate in any of the modalities, I gained a considerable amount of knowledge and experience from observing and asking questions.  The most important thing I took away from my experiences was how vital communication is amongst health professionals and the patient.  I’m grateful to all my preceptors as they were very patient with all the questions I had and can’t wait to start the professional phase soon!

This is one of a series of blog posts written by students entering the professional phase of the SLU AT Program as a part of MAT 3000 - AT Student Development II.

May 18, 2022

SLU AT Students/Billiken Athletes Gain a Wider Understanding of the Profession

New PY1 AT Student Blog Post - Karsen Kohl and Julia Martinez (MAT Class of 2024)

Karsen Kohl

Entering the Professional Phase of the AT Program requires students to experience
athletic trainers at a clinical site. There were multiple options in choosing where to get directed
observation hours and with being a student athlete at SLU I chose to get a look at how a school,
in particular a high school, manages an athlete’s health in the training room. I started my
observation experience at John Burroughs School, a high school close to SLU’s campus. I
shadowed PY1 student Olivia Mani and PY2 student Katie Wissing who are currently placed
there as their every day clinical site this spring semester. I got the opportunity to observe athletic
trainer Dean Tiffany ATC care for and tend to his athletes.

During my experience at Burroughs, I learned a lot about the impact an athletic trainer
has on the athlete both in rehabilitation and in recovery. As a student athlete at the collegiate
level, I understand the importance of rehab but I did not understand this when I was in high
school. It was eye opening to see how many students visited the training room right when school
ended and before practice. Most of the students that visited the trainer were familiar faces every
day with normal routines pre game/practice and some of the students were new and wanting the
help to best manage their body and health in regards to their sport.

The process of an athletic trainer goes further than rendering treatment to athletes, it is
about providing water to prevent hypohydration. I was able to be hands-on in helping Olivia and
Katie get ice and water in coolers to all fields for the teams as well as help with the clean up process after all teams finished their events. I had the opportunity to watch the events on the
sideline with Dean who is ensuring the safety and health of the athletes in his care. A learning
experience that I will take with me as I enter the professional phase was when Olivia and Katie
assessed an athlete who came in with pain in the knee. The two of them began by asking the
athlete a series of questions in order to come to the conclusion of the occurrence and timing of
the injury. They ran through a series of tests of mobility and strength to try and pinpoint the exact
muscles that were being affected. Through this information based on the athlete's pain, they were
able to come up with a diagnosis that allowed the athlete to receive a set of exercises and pain
management to effectively return the athlete back to play. This experience allowed me to
understand the process of assessing a new injury and the job of an athletic trainer to help with the
athlete’s pain. I had such a great experience at Burroughs and learned a lot that I will take with
me while I enter into the Professional Phase of the AT Program.

Julia Martinez

 really enjoyed doing the direct observation hours. I was able to learn from different people and see athletic trainers do things in different settings with athletes. Some things that I learned from this experience was about PPE (preparticipation physical exam). These exams are important for SLU athletics. Elena Melillo ATC had all returning student athletes get these exams taken. They had to get their weight, height, vitals, and BESS testing measured. It was cool to watch PY1 and PY2 do some of these tests because I learned the BESS testing in class and was able to apply it to this PPE. With regards of the track meet, I witnessed a hamstring tear and other lower leg injuries. It was interesting to be at a track meet because I’ve never been to one and I was able to see how runners respond after they finish running. Lastly, Elena also taught me the concussion protocol and what she needs to do and use for reference for the student athlete and see how their concussion is improving. The different types of testing you do to test out the student athlete’s concussion is a long process but an important one.

I went to John Burroughs high school and observed Olivia Mani and her preceptor Dean Tiffany ATC. It was nice to observe a high school setting since I’m so used to a college scene. I watched Olivia do stem and a Graston massage on an athlete. Dean also did a shin splint taping which was interesting since I’ve never seen one before. We watched the girls’ and boys’ lacrosse games. It was very cold, sleeting, and pouring rain on us while we were sitting in the gator watching the games. Something I learned from that experience is to always make sure to dress warm and prepare ahead of time with extra layers in my car. In conclusion, I enjoyed these direct observation hours because I was able to get a good taste of what I’ll be doing next year. 

This is one of a series of blog posts written by students entering the professional phase of the SLU AT Program as a part of MAT 3000 - AT Student Development II.

May 17, 2022

SLU AT Student Gets an Exciting Look into Her Future Through Experience at Pattonville HS

New PY1 AT Student Blog Post - Marissa Uecker (MAT Class of 2024)

This spring I had the opportunity to visit Pattonville High School during direct observation with PY1 Emily Haley and her preceptor, Alex Hubbs MAT, ATC. During this experience, I learned more about the environment of an athletic training room. I experienced a very social and inviting atmosphere in the Pattonville athletic training room, which made every student feel cared for and welcomed.

This environment made me excited for my future clinical experiences and professional practice. I also learned more about the professional phase of SLU’s program during this observation opportunity. At Pattonville, I observed Emily perform a joint mobilization and drain blood from under an athlete’s toenail. I was pleasantly surprised by her wide span of knowledge and capabilities, and I was excited by the realization that I will be in her place in just a year. With this understanding, I made sure to ask about her experiences and for any advice that she had.

Accordingly, she shared her experiences with everything from gross anatomy to clinical sites and preceptors. I found great comfort in our conversation, as it came from someone who has experienced everything that I am getting ready to go through.

Furthermore, I learned more about myself during this process. I surprisingly found joy in Alex’s immaculately organized athletic training room, which I will note when it comes to my future clinical experiences. Additionally, Alex helped me to realize exactly how I learn best. I observed that Alex allowed Emily to do most of the work in order to gain hands-on experience, but he was there to guide her and give her feedback. He also fostered an environment where questions were always welcomed. Before coming into this experience, I didn’t know how to exactly explain the environment that I learn best in. However, after observing at Pattonville, I came to realize that I learn and thrive best where there are hands-on learning experiences with feedback and welcomed questions. This realization will definitely help me when finding a clinical site that best suits me.

Ultimately, this experience gave me an opportunity to look into the future and finally experience what I came to college for. Direct observation allowed me to learn more about athletic training in general, the professional phase of SLU’s program, and myself. After this experience, I am even more excited for the hands-on learning experience that is to come in the professional phase of the program.

This is one of a series of blog posts written by students entering the professional phase of the SLU AT Program as a part of MAT 3000 - AT Student Development II.

May 15, 2022

SLU AT Student Sees the Importance of Professional Relationships and Networking in Athletic Training

New PY1 AT Student Blog Post - Carlton McDonald-Jordan (MAT Class of 2024)

During the semester, I had the opportunity to observe various events and clinical sites. These opportunities allowed me to witness first-hand what it is like to be an athletic trainer (AT) and engage in a professional healthcare setting, both with patients (athletes) and other healthcare professionals. Two big takeaways from the experience would be the importance of establishing good, healthy relationships with the athletes that build a foundation of trust and being open to exploration in the athletic training world and allowing your personal desires to be stepstones through your journey as an athletic trainer. 

A great observation opportunity I was able to experience was the Missouri Valley Conference Men’s Basketball Tournament held at the Enterprise Center on the first weekend of March. I loved being in the collegiate basketball environment and it is something I wish to experience at some point in my professional career. I had the opportunity to witness interprofessional collaboration on a bigger scale as there were various professionals from different institutions and practices. This experience also showed me how small the athletic training world is, which places much emphasis on connecting and networking. My favorite part of the experience, though, was seeing the athletes interact with the athletic trainers. Instantly, you could tell the relationship between the athletes and AT was unique and cannot be replicated by many other professionals. It was also great to be able to connect with old friends and teammates who were playing in the tournament for their respective institutions.

Another great handful of observations came at Affton High School with PY1 Jordan Hyink and preceptor Becky Stigen ATC. During this experience, I was able to observe up-close the working relationship between trainers and young athletes. The athletes in this case (young teenagers) seem to engage more with the AT on a personal level. This experience provided a different atmosphere, one that appeared to be less competitive and more convivial. The AT's at Affton did a great job of communicating areas of concern while also recognizing the athletes’ autonomy. From this, I was able to  recognize the importance of placing the athlete at the center of care and catering care to meet their needs and/or wants.

This is one of a series of blog posts written by students entering the professional phase of the SLU AT Program as a part of MAT 3000 - AT Student Development II.

May 12, 2022

SLU AT Student Inspired by Person-Centered Focus of Peers, Preceptors and Professional Experiences

New PY1 AT Student Blog Post - Claire Love (MAT Class of 2024)

It is well known that the life of an athletic trainer is oftentimes hectic. There are always multiple people demanding your attention, multiple things you have to get done, and somehow certified athletic trainers find a way to get it all done. This was definitely the case when I visited Fontbonne University where PY 1 Lauren Swords is learning from Sammie Hochmuth ATC. Currently Sammie is the only athletic trainer serving all 18 athletic teams. But even in the midst of being busy, you could tell that Sammie's  number one priority was the relationships she has with her athletes. Throughout the afternoon out of season athlete after out of season athlete came in just to hang out and see Sammie. They wanted to share the joys and excitement of school success and potential job offers. While others came in just to ask for advice. Whatever it was Sammie made time to be there and be present for them. Athletes trust Sammie because when they come to her they feel that their voice is being heard. As I start my time in the professional program and progress into being a certified athletic trainer, I want to be this type of ATC. I want to be a person-centered athletic trainer whose athletes trust me with their health and treatments, but also just in life. I want my athletes to know that I am always in their corner and will support them in every positive decision they make. Getting to watch Sammie live this out is inspiration to me. 

Another huge inspiration for me this semester was getting to attend the MAATA District 5 Annual Meeting and Symposium in Omaha, NE. During this conference I was able to attend different educational sessions that covered a wide variety of topics. One of the most interesting sessions  I attended was titled “Cultural Competence in Athletic Training” and talked about how athletic training is so much more than treating an injured athlete. Being an athletic trainer really means becoming an invested member of the community you are working in, so that you can be a comrade for a patient as they walk through their injury. So this means when a patient is not compliant in their home exercise program, you don't just write them off as lazy, you dig in  and find out why they have not been compliant. And for many athletes it is because they have a multiple of other responsibilities on their plate. In the secondary school setting you might have an athlete who is homeless. Non-compliance is no longer the problem, addressing where they are going to sleep that night is. And as an invested member of the community, you make connections and are able to link them to resources that they might need. I think this is a part of athletic training that is not talked about enough, but I think it is so important.  Another opportunity I was fortunate enough to have during MAATA was to meet and network with certified athletic trainers. I met so many different people who work in so many different settings. Getting to hear their stories and experiences just excited me even more to join the profession! 

This is one of a series of blog posts written by students entering the professional phase of the SLU AT Program as a part of MAT 3000 - AT Student Development II.

May 09, 2022

SLU AT Students Appreciate the Benefit of Experience at Multiple Clinical Sites

New PY1 AT Student Blog Post - Justin Epperly and Brandon Pavon (MAT Class of 2024)

Justin Epperly

This spring semester has been the beginning of our transition into the professional years of our Athletic training program. When we started observation hours it was equally exciting and nerve-racking, but after visiting John Burroughs, Washington University, and Fontbonne I realized there was much more to be excited about than nervous. It was very interesting to see the similarities across each clinical site and the minute differences such as scraping, taping techniques, and the use of cupping for examples. Not only were some of the therapeutic modalities different, but so were the spaces and overall environments. It was very interesting to see the part of being an AT that is not focused on as much. When I was not watching patient care, we spent our time talking with the athletic directors, coaches, and other athletes. This whole experience has really shed some light on the importance of the bond between the AT and those we work around. We truly are the connection from athlete to the school and sometimes the coaches.

During my observation hours I was fortunate to shadow Eldwin Neritani and Muharem Komic at Wash U; Lauren Swords and her preceptor Sammie Hochmuth ATC at Fontbonne; and Olivia Mani, Katie Wissing and their preceptor Dean Tiffany ATC at John Burroughs. I was also fortunate enough to have some of my fellow AT classmates shadow with me, shout out to Sha Jones, Brandon Pavon, and Marissa Uecker. However, one of my most memorable learning experiences came to me when I was shadowing at John Burroughs alone and one student dislocated his shoulder. I had never seen a dislocation or reduction of any kind so this was an amazing opportunity to witness something that one would not normally get to see. Luckily the student’s shoulder was reduced, and he was alright. Another memorable experience was also at John Burroughs with my fellow AT classmate, Brandon. Being our last day, we were able to try cupping…. Not on anyone else of course, but Olivia offered to cup our backs. This was a great learning experience because cupping, while it is not accepted everywhere, is a growing modality that many athletes enjoy. I think it was very beneficial to understand how cupping works and feels for my future as an AT, and for that matter, I think my time as a whole, at all the clinical sites I visited, were critical in my development as a future AT and have sparked excitement for my future!

Brandon Pavon

Starting this clinical observation process I was pretty nervous because this was the closest, I’ve been to seeing what it would be like to actually be an athletic trainer. Throughout my time at multiple different clinical sites, I was able to get a feel of how the different environments operate and how they vary from place to place. I mainly got to see the difference John Burroughs High School and DeSmet Jesuit high school. While the training rooms themselves vary drastically, the day to day very a lot too. At DeSmet, which is a all boys school, we mainly talked to the coaches before practices as well as watched the varsity volleyball team practice. At John Burroughs we saw a lot more students as they are required to take a sport along with it being a coed school. With the fall sports games starting around the time I went to John Burroughs I was also able to watch more games compared to my visit to DeSmet where the games had not started yet.

Justin and I have been to John Burroughs High School a couple of times now with Olivia, Katie, and Dean as the preceptor. Each time we went Dean has been super welcoming and helpful. There was one time Dean was taping an ankle and his technique was different than the one we learned from class so he was explaining to us why he does it the way he does. There was also some other times where Dean would be taping an arch or shin splint and he was explaining what happened to the person and why they needed this kind of taping job. It is experiences like these that lead to a further passion in this profession

This is one of a series of blog posts written by students entering the professional phase of the SLU AT Program as a part of MAT 3000 - AT Student Development II.