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NATM Spotlight
National Athletic Trainers Month Spotlight
Monday, March 25 2019
Day 25 Athletic Trainer Spotlight - Edwin Gomez

Edwin Gomez LAT, LMT

I am from Palmview, TX and a Palmview High graduate from the Class of 2010. I did my undergrad degree in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Athletic Training at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, I am a Vaquero but I also consider myself a Bronc since I was part of the transition from UTPA to UTRGV. Not only am I a Licensed Athletic Trainer but am also a Licensed Massage Therapist and American Red Cross First Aid/AED/CPR instructor. 

I currently reside and work in Palmview at my Alma Mater. 

I try to stay involved in my profession and most importantly in my community. Currently I am the webmaster for our Valley Athletic Trainers’ Association website,and volunteer for Gridiron Heroes committee. 

I am in year 2 as an Athletic Trainer. 

How/when did you become interested in the field of Athletic Training? 

Those close to me know my story, I became intrigued by Athletic Training my senior year of High School, thanks to Melissa Reinert and Scott Chambers. As an athlete I had 2 “major” injures that landed me in the athletic training room. One was dropping my max weight onto my thigh while doing power clean and second was having a subconjunctival hemorrhage on my right eye by getting my eye jabbed and receiving a concussion all on the same play. But Doc Mel and Doc Chambers were there to have me back on the field. After all that I only missed one game my senior year. BUT I went on to dance flamenco my freshman year in college with a professional dance company, Yjastros, in Albuquerque, NM while attending Central New Mexico CC and taking a couple of courses at the University of New Mexico. After that one year in Albuquerque my grandfather passed away and it was time for me to come home. With uncertainty of what I wanted to become I enrolled at STVT where I received my professional massage therapy license. Halfway through the program I knew I loved healing people and also loved being around sports so after graduating STVT I enrolled at UTPA/UTRGV to pursue my Athletic Training degree and went on to become the 2016 Student Athletic Trainer of the Year while working with baseball and volleyball. 

What drives you to do your job?

My kids do. Every single student athlete and student athletic trainer has a unique story to tell and I try to always be there to listen as my teachers and mentors did to me when I was their age. It’s a great feeling not only rehabbing them back to health but also teaching them how to avoid such injuries by taking care of their body so they can fend for themselves when they get to the next level and the real world. 

Has Athletic Training provided you an opportunity to travel, either in or out of country? What is your favorite memory from this experience? 

Athletic Training has given me many opportunities to travel. With UTRGV I got to travel with baseball to Abilene. Had the honor of working with the 2017 WAC Volleyball Champions and received the PFATS Minority Scholarship which granted me an intern position with the NFL Tennessee Titans which I got to work the two home games vs. Carolina Panthers and San Diego Chargers in Nashville, TN and travel to Oakland, CA vs. the Oakland Raiders, as well as to Miami, FL vs. the Miami Dolphins. In my first year at Palmview I got to Travel to  Corpus Christi for XC Regionals, San Antonio for Track and Field Regionals and Austin for State Track and Field where I got to see the most decorated female athlete Palmview has ever had. Year 2, I was selected as a TGCA All Star Athletic Trainer for Softball got to travel to Arlington, TX and this football season I got to Travel to Corpus Christi for my first ever football playoff game. Currently I am helping out the Rio Grande Valley Dorados and will be able to travel to Mexico City, MX and Austin, TX in their first season back!

Do you have any advice for other ATs or students contemplating a career in Athletic Training?

Be AMBITIOUS , Be OPEN MINDED and NETWORK! You never know when the other person is in a position to help you or you’re in a position to help them. For current ATs, balance your work and family because self time burn out is real! You have to be able to manage your time. Lastly, being an Athletic Trainer is the most selfless job. We give and give and don’t take back BUT when recognized it makes it all worth the while.

Posted by: AT 01:54 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, March 22 2019
Day 22 Athletic Trainer Spotlight - Alejandra (Ale) Borrego

Alejandra (Ale) Borrego, LAT

Hometown: Alamo, TX

High School: PSJA Memorial High School 2009

Undergrad: University of Texas Pan American 2013

Current Workplace: Weslaco High School (2016-present)

- Interned with the RGV Sol Professional Arena Football team 2015 season

-3rd year in the profession

- American Heart Association – BLS and Heartsaver Instructor

How/when did you become interested in the field of Athletic Training?

I became interested in the field back in high school. I was never a student trainer however I was always intrigued by everything my then ATs, JoJo Ruiz and Chad Hilburn, did. I was a multi-sport athlete growing up and was always torn between being a coach or an ortho. While in Athletic Training Internship at Pan Am, I did a lot of hours helping JoJo and Chad at the high school level and decided that this was definitely something I could see myself doing for good.

What drives you to do your job?

The students are definitely what drive me. To know that you can make a difference in their lives and be there to help the overcome the obstacle of an injury. To have my softball girls scold me for not being the one to cover one of their games. To see the look on the face of a baseball player when they’ve finally been cleared after being out for over a month. To witness one of my seniors play in his last football game ever. Being a shoulder to cry on for a soccer girl who just lost her dad. To hear my basketball stud tell me her ankle feels 1000 times stronger than before. Hearing one of my student trainers ask “WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?!” whenever I dare to be out for even half a day. Whether it’s consoling an athlete who will never play again, to savoring a sweet victory against our town rival, the relationships you build being there for your students definitely overcome anything you could ever complain about.

Has Athletic Training provided you an opportunity to travel, either in or out of country? What is your favorite memory from this experience?

I was able to travel with the RGV Sol football team. I was a great experience being around a few former NFL players. The difference in level of play was incredible to witness and be a part of.

Do you have any advice for other ATs or students contemplating a career in Athletic Training?

The most important thing I could say is you need to love what you do. I always keep in mind a quote my mentor Jim Lancaster had in his office: “Your athletes won’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care” This has stuck with my since day one. Be compassionate without being a push over. You can be strict without being a jerk. Your students need to respect you, but should also feel comfortable enough to talk to you about anything. Also, never forget your WHY!! 

Posted by: AT 09:33 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, March 21 2019
Day 21 Athletic Trainer Spotlight - Israel

Israel Montaño MS, LAT

Hometown, Graduated High School (include year), Undergrad (year), Masters/Licenses/Certifications, etc.

I was born and raised in Weslaco, Texas and graduated from Weslaco High in 2004.  I attended Cisco Junior College, and then went on to receive my Bachelors of Science (Kinesiology) from Texas A&M University-Kingsville in 2008. Shortly after being employed by La Joya ISD, I enrolled at California University of Pennsylvania where I received my Masters of Science (Sports Management-Intercollegiate Athletics Administration) in 2012. I have been a American Red Cross Instructor since I was 18 years old, I currently Instructor Certification in Lay Responder, CPR Professional Rescuer, and Basic Life Support for Health Care Providers.

Current City and School/Workplace

I have been employed with La Joya ISD for 11 years, and had the pleasure of serving the athletes of Juarez-Lincoln High School.

Any involvement with other organizations or community services positions?

I currently serve as the Board of Director for Continuing Education for the Valley Athletic Trainers Association and have proudly served that position since 2016, and also part of the Student Affairs Committee since 2009.

How many years in the profession?

I am now in my 11th year as a Licensed athletic trainer.

How/when did you become interested in the field of Athletic Training?

I became introduced to Athletic Training by Coach Jim Hite, who was trying to recruit me to join the football team. It was his first year back at Weslaco, so he was trying to gather up a football team. I told him I was interested, so he then offered me a job as equipment manager, I declined again. He then asked if I was interested in becoming a student trainer. I asked what that entailed, he replied “ they help the athletes when they are injured and help them get back in to playing condition”. I hesitated at first but agreed to join, that is how I got to know the funny Israel Pena, and Griselda Fino. It is because of those two, that I fell in love with the profession of athletic training. I owe my career to Jim Hite for introducing me to the profession.

If from out of the valley, how did you end up at the position you are currently in?

Valley Born and Raised

What drives you to do your job?

It’s very simple, these high school kids are what drive me to do my best. The fact that I get to be a part of their lives, and instill some wisdom in them. Jackie Robinson was quoted as saying “A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.” and I strive to impact as many lives as I can while I’m here on earth.

Has Athletic Training provided you an opportunity to travel, either in or out of country? What is your favorite memory from this experience?

                Athletic Training has given me the opportunity to travel a lot both in college, and professionally with the Rio Grande Valley White Wings Baseball Club and Corpus Christi Hammerheads arena football club. I have traveled to over 30 states, and even spent two weeks in Alaska with the Corpus Christi Hammerheads in Anchorage and Fairbanks. My favorite experience traveling was also during Alaska, I decided to take a stroll in Fairbanks, and experienced the nature Alaska had to offer. The beautiful mountain ranges in the background, summer snow, never ending daylight, and even a close encounter with a moose.

Do you have any advice for other ATs or students contemplating a career in Athletic Training?

Take care of yourself first. I know it’s in our blood to want to help others and give the best care, and devout ourselves to the profession. We must also learn to take a step back and take care of ourselves because if we’re not well, then how can we expect to help those who need us. For the younger AT’s, here is some advice I learned over the years, learn to pick your battles. Not everything is worth the fight or argument with your superiors or athletes. There are some principles worth fighting for, and others that are not. Trust me on this, your stress level will dramatically reduce, and overall relationship with coaches and athletes will improve and make your job easier.

Posted by: AT 06:30 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, March 20 2019
Day 20 Athletic Trainer Spotlight - Susan Detwiler
Susan Detwiler LAT, ATC
West Chester, PA
Raised in Harrisburg, PA
Lancaster Mennonite 1983
Eastern Mennonite College 1987
James Madison University--Athletic Training 1991
BOC 1992
Texas State License 1998
American Red Cross Instructor 1st Aid/CPR/AED & CPR for Professional Rescuer 
Stop The Bleed 2019

Current City and School/Workplace 
Edinburg, TX
Edinburg High School
Any involvement with other organizations or community services positions?
VATA Treasurer
VATA SPATS Committee

BOC Certified for 27 years
I have worked at FDU-Florham--1 year
Rockingham Memorial Hospital (Outreach/Clinic Athletic Trainer)--4 years
Edinburg HIgh--22 years


How/when did you become interested in the field of Athletic Training? 
I had a foot injury that kept me from playing basketball my junior year of high school that if we had an athletic trainer I probably would have been out for a few weeks. I also had some injuries in college playing field hockey at EMC that I had to figure out how to treat on my own. I heard about the athletic training program at James Madison University which was cross town from EMC. I thought about going to PT school but I really loved being involved with sports and the program at JMU was considered one of the best. I decided to combine my love of sports and medicine. 

If from out of the valley, how did you end up at the position you are currently in? 
I applied for a number of positions around the US and Richard Flores from ECISD called and offered me a job at Edinburg High so I packed my car with my 5 year old son and my 3 year old daughter and all our earthly belongings and drove 1600 miles to Edinburg. I had know idea where Edinburg was when I applied and was offered the job. I was told the easiest way to find Edinburg on a map was to find Reynosa, Mexico and look about 15 miles north and I would find Edinburg.  Twenty two years later it is still the best decision I could have made.

What drives you to do your job? 
I love to help people. Teaching young athletes how to take care of their bodies and hopefully giving them tools to live a long healthy life are my motivation. Plus working with teenagers keeps me young.

Has Athletic Training provided you an opportunity to travel, either in or out of country?
What is your favorite memory from this experience? I have had the opportunity to travel with ISF to Thailand with athletes and coaches to help with sports camps with some universities in Bangkok. Working with some of the soccer players and Muy Thai fighters was probably my most memorable experience while in Thailand.
Do you have any advice for other ATs or students contemplating a career in Aetic Training?  
Never stop learning! Don't be afraid to learn new techniques. Love the athletes you work with. They all want to feel that they are important and that you care. The ones who are always "hurt" need more love. Know when to be tough with them and push them through those hard rehabs and celebrate the small victories with them. You may not get much recognition from the public but the smile and thank you you get from your athletes after they are able to return to the sport they love will be enough.
Posted by: AT 10:34 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, March 19 2019
Day 19 Athletic Trainer Spotlight - Jason

Jason “Chad” Hilburn

Meeker, Oklahoma

Meeker High School, May 1991

Southwestern Oklahoma State University, May 1996 – BS in Health, Physical Education and Recreation (HPER)

Texas Licensure July 1997, Finishing my 22nd year as an LAT

Edcouch-Elsa High School,  August 1997 – May 2003

PSJA Memorial High School, August 2003 – Present

AHA / ASHI instructor, UIL Weight Certification Assessor




How/when did you become interested in the field of Athletic Training?

As a high school freshman football player from “small town” Oklahoma, fractured my hand and was referred to the “big city” (Oklahoma City) orthopedic institute to make sure the growth plate wasn’t involved. I always had an interest in the medical field and after getting to see the combination of sports and medicine in person, I knew I wanted to in some way make it my career. 

If from out of the valley, how did you end up at the position you are currently in?

The year I graduated and became licensed, 4 or 5 of us from SWOSU came to Texas to begin our careers as high school Athletic Trainers.  I actually started working in south Dallas at a high school until the day came for new employees to sign contracts and mine was about $8000 less than what I was told over the phone. Luckily I had saved a message from the Edcouch-Elsa A.D. and they still had an opening. A 12 hour drive later, I was here and haven’t moved out of the valley since !!! In 2003 the position opened at PSJA Memorial, it was a little bit of a pay raise and a good place to continue ‘til now.

What drives you to do your job?

The satisfaction of seeing an athlete go from serious injury or recovering from surgery to playing at the same or better level than they were before. The pride of knowing how so many things that we do as Athletic Trainers affect and make the lives better for the athletes (and coaches) that we come in contact with.

Has Athletic Training provided you an opportunity to travel, either in or out of country? What is your favorite memory from this experience?

During the summers, the travel opportunities have always been there for me as an Athletic Trainer, but I use those 8 weeks for family and friends, and time and travel not dealing with our profession.

Do you have any advice for other ATs or students contemplating a career in Athletic Training?

Take care of yourself and Don’t take your job home with you!!!! Athletic Training is such a time demanding career and you give so much of yourself making sure that others are safe and healthy. Sometimes you may become so overwhelmed that you forget about yourself andwhat you need to continue this profession for 20 to 30 years. Find a way to separate the two and keep an even balance.  That being said, there are many positives and it’s a great career choice.

You’ll meet some of the greatest people and fellow ATs, work along the side of the brightest doctors, keep up with the latest innovations in medicine, and have a career that can be very rewarding.

Posted by: AT 07:52 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, March 18 2019
Day 18 Athletic Trainer Spotlight - Maria Thompson

Maria Thompson, LAT

I am from Pharr, graduated from PSJA High school in 1979 when there was only one high school. Went to Pan American University and graduated in 1984 and am a Licensed Athletic Trainer.

I currently work in La Joya at La Joya High School and am involved with the American Red Cross.

I have been an athletic trainer for 34 years.

How/when did you become interested in the field of Athletic Training? 

I became an interested in the field of athletic training my sophomore year of high school. As an athlete I noticed that the athletic trainer at my school did not care for the female athletes, this pissed me off and I said this will never happen again.  The following year I begin to learn the very basic of athletic training while still an athlete.  In college I just walked into the athletic training room and stated I wanted to be an athletic trainer, I was tested on some basic taping skills and then the rest is history.

What drives you to do your job? 

Knowing that I will be able to help someone every day is what drives me in this job.  There is never a dull moment and always get to have front row seating at all games. I am still learning new skills in this profession.

Has Athletic Training provided you an opportunity to travel, either in or out of country? What is 
your favorite memory from this experience? 

I have worked with Nolan Ryan and his children, and with Domenique Moceanu and the entire 1996 Olympic Gymnastics Team.  It was an awesome experience working with these athletes. I've worked the Houston Marathon with a number of elite runners from around the world. I've work a mini grand pre car race and this was a different experience from any thing I've ever worked.

Do you have any advice for other ATs or students contemplating a career in Athletic Training?

 If you are contemplating a career in athletic training the advice I can give you is love it with all your heart and soul.  It is not an easy job and the hours are long but the satiation of knowing you are helping an athlete is the best reward in the world. 

Posted by: AT 10:36 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, March 17 2019
Day 17 Athletic Trainer Spotlight- John Herrera

John Herrera MA, LAT, ATC

Hometown: Salinas, CA. 

High School: Salinas High School (Cowboys). 
Undergrad: Graduated with a Bachelor's Degree from Fresno State (California State University, Fresno) with a degree in Kinesiology with an option in Athletic Training.
Graduate School: Graduated with a Master's degree from Chico State (California State University, Chico) in Kinesiology with an option in Athletic Training Education.
Certification/Licenses: NATA BOC Athletic Trainer, Licensed Athletic Trainer

Current City and Workplace: Pharr San Juan Alamo (PSJA) North Early College High School.  

10 years working as an Athletic Trainer. 

How did you get interested in Athletic Training?

Where I am from in California, we did not have athletic trainers in some of the high schools. I discovered Athletic Training while at Fresno State walking by the school basketball gym. There was a flyer on the wall describing the Athletic Training Program. I have always been a sports fan of all sports. I spoke with the program director at Fresno State and it seemed like a good fit for me. 

If from out of the valley, how did you end up at the position you are currently in?

I worked from 2009-2010 as an Athletic Trainer at Midwestern State in Wichita Falls, TX. While there, I learned about SPATS and decided to take a trip down to the island for a vacation and CEU opportunity. Later that summer, I received a phone call from Cathy Gilberto at San Benito CISD while with my family in CA. One week later, I flew down to San Benito to sign my paperwork to start working. One week after that, I drove down with my family from Salinas, CA to Wichita Falls and then down to Harlingen. I have been living here ever since 2010.    

What drives you to do your job?

Knowing we make a difference in helping student athletes return to their sport. I know that some schools in the country don't have the ability to employ an Athletic Trainer in their district. The school district I came from in California still does not have an Athletic Trainer at their high schools.  

Has Athletic Training provided the opportunity to travel either in or out of the country?

The profession has not provided me the opportunity to travel outside the country. I have traveled to Hawaii for 10 days when I was a grad assistant working with Men's Soccer. I have had the privilege to travel to Florida as a chaperone at San Benito where we reward our students with a trip to Disney World. My favorite memory of traveling as an Athletic Trainer is always going to the NATA conference. I've been able to travel to Las Vegas, Baltimore, New Orleans, and future locations.  

 Do you have any advice for other ATs or students contemplating a career in Athletic Training? ​

Continue to learn, both about yourself and our profession. I've grown as an athletic trainer and changed the way I work over the span of a decade. It's tough to teach someone that knows everything. We are always learning. 

Posted by: AT 03:16 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, March 16 2019
Day 16 Athletic Trainer Spotlight- Jessi Galindo

Jessi Galindo

My name is Jessi Galindo, born and raised in Del Rio, TX. I graduated from Del Rio High School in 2011 and went on to Howard Payne University in Brownwood, TX, where I graduated with a bachelors in Athletic Training, and am a Licensed Athletic Trainer. 

Current City and School/Workplace

My current city is Brownsville, TX where I work at Rivera ECHS, as well as cover 2 junior high schools, Dr. Juliet V. Garcia and Louise Perkins. 

Any involvement with other organizations or community services positions (American Red Cross, Boys & Girls Club, etc.)

I am a member of the Valley Athletic Trainers Association (VATA). 

How many years in the profession

This is my 2nd year as a professional and have a total of 9 years of student experience. 

How/when did you become interested in the field of Athletic Training?

I became interested in Athletic Training as I went into high school as a freshmen where I worked under Brad Dixon and Alan Davis as a student athletic trainer for DRHS. 

If from out of the valley, how did you end up at the position you are currently in?

I’m originally from Del Rio, but came to the valley accepting my current position with the hopes to grow and learn as an Athletic Trainer. 

What drives you to do your job? Knowing that I am able to make a difference helping athletes get back to the field after being injured whether it being minor or a possible career ending and building relationships with students 

Has Athletic Training provided you an opportunity to travel, either in or out of country? What is your favorite memory from this experience?

As an a student athletic trainer at HPU, I traveled to SE Asia twice in the summer of 2013 and 2014. A lot of my favorite memories were working overseas and my high school student athletic trainer experience. 

Do you have any advice for other ATs or students contemplating a career in Athletic Training?

Never let someone determine what you want your career to be and stand your ground. Be confident in yourself and your decisions. Not every situation and injury is going to be the same and it’s ok to be wrong. Trial and error is how we learn. Ask questions and never apologize for wanting to learn and better yourself.

Posted by: AT 09:56 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, March 15 2019
Day 15 Athletic Trainer Spotlight- Raymond McCumber

Raymond McCumber

I am Raymond McCumber born and raised in San Antonio, TX. I graduated high school from Converse Judson in 2007 and from there earned my BS in athletic training from Texas State University C/O 2016. I am a certified athletic trainer from the BOC as well as licensed in the state of Texas, I also am a CPR instructor by the AHA.  Currently I reside in McAllen and work for Donna High School finishing up my third year as an athletic trainer.

How/when did you become interested in the field of Athletic Training?

Growing up I always had an interest in the medical field and had thought of working in a sports medicine clinic as a career, so at first my major at Tx St was pre-pt. While I was at Judson I played football and at the time our athletic trainer was not really utilized like we are today, and I never really got hurt or spent much time in the training room. So naturally I didn't know too much about the field of athletic training. All I knew was that I wanted to be in a health profession and work with athletes because my drive to still be in the sports world was there. After a few years in school, pre-pt was not working out so my counselor directed me to switch my major to athletic training which was a big turning point in my life. After taking a class called orientation to athletic training, thank you Mrs. Webb, I was hooked and was an eye opening moment. I thought to myselft that this is what I've been wanting to do the whole time and the rest is history. I still love and have so much passion for my job and switching my major was one of the best decisions I've made in my life.

If from out of the valley, how did you end up at the position you are currently in?

During the spring of 2016 I was looking around for job openings and because I didn't have a teaching cert, my options were somewhat limited. At the time I was in my high school rotation at Canyon Lake HS and Israel Pena told me why don't I look into the valley. I was told the pay is good and I will get a lot of experience down here and he was right. During that time there was a ton of job openings in the RGV so I just started applying and Donna was the first school to offer me.

What drives you to do your job?

First off my love and passion for this job is what drives me. I'm so thankful waking up in the morning and going to "work", some days are mentally taxing but the love and deisre makes it all worth it. Another thing that drives me is knowing that these athletes are relying on you. I try to give them some structure and help them be more responsible, accountable, and set a foundation to have good character. My goal is to get these athletes back and better than what they were before an injury which doesn't always happen, but if they see your effort and drive it makes them work that much harder. Lastly, the rewarding feeling of always being there for them even its just listening and having someone to talk to, or seeing them at their weakest point due to injury, and seeing them achieve their goals. Whether is returning to their normal ADLs or to the field, court, etc.

Has Athletic Training provided you an opportunity to travel, either in or out of country? What is your favorite memory from this experience? 

During my time in undergrad I was able to travel with the football team and the basketball team which was exciting. At the high school setting not so much, but I do get to travel for some playoff games and track if they make it to regionals.

Do you have any advice for other ATs or students contemplating a career in Athletic Training?

Some advice I have is if you are a ATS and plan on working at the high school setting is to get your teacher cert during your undergrad, this is a big deal when it comes to the hiring process. Another thing, especially if you are fresh out of school is to take if one day at a time. Some days will be exhausting and others will be a breeze, but learning to turn the page on the tough times and leaving work at work, don't bring it home. Also, being that we would love to help everyone and do our absolute best with all athletes, sometimes it is not possible especially at bigger schools with a ton of athletes. Learning to go with it and letting things go are big, somethings are out of our control. Another thing I will say is that you are going to make mistakes, every one does, just remain confident in your skills and continue to learn. Don't make the same mistake twice, and keeping good communication with your AD, coaches, and parents will make your life a lot easier. 

Posted by: AT 07:36 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, March 14 2019
Day 14 Athletic Trainer Spotlight- Claudia Gonzalez
Claudia Gonzalez
I am from Pharr, Texas and graduated from South Texas High School for Health Professions, also known as Med-High, in Mercedes, Texas. After high school, I attended UTPA (University of Texas Pan American, now UT-RGV) and graduated with a bachelors degree in kinesiology. I decided to continue my education and attained a masters degree in rehabilitation counseling also from UTPA. I am a Texas licensed athletic trainer and also nationally certified as a rehabilitation counselor.
I currently reside in McAllen, Texas and work at Johnny Economedes High School. I have been at Economedes since 2011.

I like to remain involved in community work as much as possible, but we all know how hard that is with our jobs. While I was working on my masters degree, I interned at the Red Cross in Dallas with the Mental Health department. I also spent a summer working with Easter Seals and designed a health and wellness summer program for their pre-school and day care center. Currently, I am the Co-chair for the VATA Fill the Helmet Drive and Fundraising Team that gathers donations for the Gridiron Heroes.

I have been licensed as an athletic trainer since 2008 but took a break from athletic training to work on my masters degree. I have been in the profession at Economedes for 8 years.

 

How/when did you become interested in the field of Athletic Training? 

I've wanted to be an athletic trainer ever since I knew what the position entailed. It's always interesting to see the look on student athlete's faces when I tell them that the high school I attended didn't have any sports whatsoever. But that never detoured me from my love of athletics. I learned about athletic training in HOSA and immediately knew it was what I wanted to do. Medical school was not something I wanted to take on, and I also knew that even if I was in sports medicine, I would not be able to work with athletes hands on day after day. Once I looked into how athletic training helps athletes I was convinced it was where I needed to be.

What drives you to do your job?

I am driven every day by the notion that what I do makes a difference. Our job isn't just about getting that athlete back in to the game; it's about motivating the athlete to be their best and to always strive for betterment of themselves. Working with high school athletes can be very entertaining and I can honestly say that I enjoy going to work- maybe not all day every day, but every day I have something to look forward to at my job.

Has Athletic Training provided you an opportunity to travel, either in or out of country? What is your favorite memory from this experience? 

Athletic training has allowed me to travel by giving me a steady and consistent position that has summers off. I see that as a perk of working at a high school. I also was an All-Star Athletic Trainer and got to work the Texas Girls Coaches Association softball game in Austin, Texas.

Do you have any advice for other ATs or students contemplating a career in Athletic Training?

My advice to any AT or anybody really for that matter is to always be true to yourself and remember how important it is to ensure that you are always happy. Make sure to always take care of yourself above anything else. The world of athletic training can be grueling and hard but the reward is infinite. 

Posted by: AT 09:15 am   |  Permalink   |  Email

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