Athletic Training Program Preps Students for Success

by Ryan Bower, Assistant Director of Public Relations

Preparation and guidance are key components for success, and the athletic training program at Cedarville University has an impressive track record of preparing students for their professional careers.

Over the last four years, Cedarville graduates have posted a 100 percent pass rate on the Board of Certification exam for athletic trainers. Making the feat even more impressive is that each student who has passed the exam has done so on his or her first try.

Cedarville is one of just 52 programs from around the country that has posted perfect first-time scores in the last three years. The average first-time pass rate of the nation’s 365 athletic training programs was 81.4 percent from 2012-14.

“We’ve got really highly motivated students, and our faculty does a great job of identifying students who will succeed in the major,” said Michael Weller, program director and assistant professor of athletic training.

Although students are allowed to declare athletic training as their major during their freshman year, they are not actually admitted to the program until their sophomore year and must pass a 10-step process for secondary admission to the athletic training program.

This gives students the chance to prove that they can make the cut academically before diving headfirst into a very demanding and difficult field of study.
Not only do athletic training students take on a normal course load and rotations with various athletic teams, they are also required to spend time in clinical rotations with health care professionals.

“The entire program is designed for our students to succeed as long as they’re willing to study, to work hard and to stay motivated,” said Weller. “If they stay committed to the program and it’s something that God wants them to do, they’re going to be highly successful in their profession.”

Cedarville’s excellent athletic training program was on full display at this year’s Ohio Athletic Trainers Symposium as three students had their research projects chosen to be presented at the annual event. 

Kaylee Newman took first place in the case study category, an award that was voted on by athletic training professionals from across the state. Joel Bennett and Alex Heaton also presented their work at the event.

“The symposium was a great opportunity for our students to be recognized for their research,” said Weller. “All three of the students who presented have actually had their work published in the Journal of Sports Medicine and Allied Health Sciences. It’s great exposure for Cedarville to have these students recognized.”

Students who have recently graduated from the athletic training program at Cedarville have moved on to graduate programs at Delta State University, Eastern Michigan University, the University of Florida, Georgia Southern University, Northwestern University, the University of Virginia and Wright State University.

Additionally, graduates have also worked in various capacities with the Cleveland Browns, Cincinnati Bengals, Hampden-Sydney College and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 3,620 undergraduate, graduate and online students in more than 100 areas of study. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings and leading student satisfaction ratings