An Intern’s Perspective: Hands-on Experience & Preparation

Author: Katie Gross
Major: WLC Sport & Exercise Science Major
Internship Company: Wisconsin Lutheran College
#aninternsperspective

As each semester wraps up, you tend to see more and more athletes wrapped up and carrying bags of ice.  That’s where I come in!  I am studying to become an Athletic Trainer with a Sport and Exercise Science degree.  With the help of two WLC athletic trainers, I was given the opportunity to gain valuable experiences within the field.

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People think athletic trainers only go to sporting events and take care of injured athletes.  Let me tell you, that is not the only thing they do!  While it is an important part of the job, trainers also have a variety of daily administrative tasks.  I’ve seen this first-hand and have helped with these tasks.  For example, trainers make sure athletes have all medical information submitted before they begin practicing.  Once the medical information is submitted, trainers confirm there are copies on the field or court and in the office.  If an athlete is injured, the medical information needs to be easily accessible.

Athletic trainers also help athletes recover from injuries by creating rehabilitation programs and at-home exercises so athletes can quickly and safely return to their sport.

I chose to complete this internship because I knew the hands-on experience was exactly what I needed.

By observing and working with the WLC athletic trainers on evaluations, rehabilitation exercises and taping and therapeutic modalities, I was able to learn more than I would reading a book about these topics.

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I did not expect this internship to be as hands-on as it was.  The experience helped me realize that athletic training is what I want to do for the rest of my life.  Isn’t that exciting?!

An internship is critical in helping students feel confident in their career choice.

To those currently searching for an internship, I recommend doing a little research:

  • Compare all of the options available.  Do not settle on the first internship you find.
  • For internship recommendations, ask your friends, family, professors and anyone else you know.  Chances are they know someone that can offer you an internship.
  • Talk to former interns for insight into what to expect at the internship.

Be prepared.  An internship can help you decide what career truly interests you.

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