Ten athletic training students were recently chosen to speak at the Mid-America Athletic Trainer Association (MAATA) conference in Omaha. This was the first time at Nebraska Wesleyan that all students who submitted a proposal for the conference were accepted to present - showcasing the academic excellence and hard work of the Athletic Training program and its students.
Students presenting at the conference included Darrien Costello-Justus, Casey Cyganowski, Gavin Dowding, Kyle Goodban, Katrina Hookham, Cassandra Miller, Maisie Ohlrich, Rachel Troutman, Adam Weaver, and Carlyn Willis.
"Not everyone gets selected. It’s a big deal for all 10 students to be accepted - it says a lot about the students that we have."
The students began working on their proposals in the fall with supervision from Associate Professor of Health & Human Performance Mark Stutz. “Nebraska Wesleyan is great at facilitating collaboration between students and faculty so they can succeed at what they want to learn,” said Dr. Stutz. “This was a great opportunity for students to attend educational sessions on a variety of topics, and for them to network with students and professionals from across the midwest." The conference provided students with experience in what it is like to be a professional athletic training researcher.
Dr. Stutz continued, ”Presentations went through a rigorous selection process. It’s fantastic that these scholars were chosen knowing that they had to follow the exact same procedures that professionals follow. Not everyone gets selected. It’s a big deal for all 10 students to be accepted - it says a lot about the students that we have."
Senior athletic training major Carsyn Zumpfe also received the undergraduate MAATA grant. Zumpfe was the only individual in the district to win this prestigious grant.
Students showcasing their expertise
“I presented on, ‘Decreasing pain in the rotator cuff by adding eccentric contraction components to shoulder rehabilitation program,” said junior athletic training major Kyle Goodban. “I took the class ‘Rehabilitation for athletic injuries’ last fall and I was interested in learning more about the shoulder. It has the most mobile joints, so I was curious to do a deeper dive into it and its anatomy."
“My presentation was about ‘Does using eccentric calf muscle training decrease recovery time of chronic Achilles tendinosis?’ I was really excited to present my research and also talk about everything that I had learned while researching the topic,” said junior health and fitness major Katrina Hookham.
Junior athletic training major Rachel Troutman stated, “My presentation was a meta-analysis research topic on ‘Comparing the effect on interferential current therapy (IFC) on anterior talofibular ligament (ATFL) region decrease recovery time in athletes compared to isometric strengthening.’ By doing this research I found that not only is IFC and isometric strengthen separate effects on athletes, but when combining the two together it is more effective."
Students were appreciative of the support they received from their faculty members. Goodban continued, “Dr. Stutz was extremely supportive as he knew the ins and outs of the MAATA process. He was helpful in providing the links to submit our research, as well as the topics. He helped us with the poster design and choosing layouts and colors. He was there every step of the way, and I couldn’t have done it without him."
Additional support came from the Student-Faculty Collaborative Research grant, which helped students pay for printing costs and event registration.