One hundred percent of Colby-Sawyer’s 2016 athletic training graduates who sat for the Board of Certification passed on their first attempt. By comparison, the 2015 national first-time pass average among bachelor’s degree candidates was 77 percent.

Athletic trainers are health care professionals who collaborate with physicians to provide preventative services, emergency care, clinical diagnosis, therapeutic intervention and rehabilitation of injuries and medical conditions. To become a board certified athletic trainer, candidates must graduate with a degree in athletic training from a program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) and successfully pass the Board of Certification (BOC) exam.

Assistant Professor and Director of Colby-Sawyer’s Athletic Training Education Program Theodore “T. J.” Smith, M.S., was impressed with the camaraderie among this year’s graduates, as well as the support they received at their clinical sites. “This class understood the importance of preparation not only to achieve clinical proficiency but also to be successful on the Board of Certification exam,” said Professor Smith. “They impressed me with their support of each other, both in and out of the classroom, focusing on group success as they looked beyond themselves. The class was also assisted by our on-campus and off-campus preceptors who, in addition to their normal duties, provided encouragement, counseling and friendship to contribute to students’ development in becoming professional athletic trainers.”

Professor Jean Eckrich, Ph.D., chair of the Exercise and Sport Sciences Department, also credits students’ work ethic for their successful outcomes. “This accomplishment is a reflection of our students’ commitments to their education in the classroom and in their clinical placements,” she said.

The athletic training major at Colby-Sawyer focuses on the prevention, recognition, management and rehabilitation of injuries for the physically active. The program supplements students' academic preparation with clinical experiences, preparing them for careers in college and school athletics, professional sports, hospitals and clinics and corporate or industrial settings. The program also prepares students for graduate studies in athletic training, physical therapy and other health care fields.

The 2016 athletic training graduates are pursuing master’s degrees in athletic training through graduate assistantships or working as athletic trainers in college and high school settings. Previous graduates have gone on to be athletic trainers with professional sports teams, colleges and universities, clinics and hospitals throughout New England and across the United States.