As you may have heard by now, Gannon has introduced a new Master of Athletic Training (MAT) program which is available to students at both the main (Erie) and Ruskin campuses. The program is designed to prepare students for professional careers in the growing field of Athletic Training. To better introduce students to the Master of Athletic Training program, we asked Susan Wehring, the Program Director at Ruskin about the program and her background in the field.
Why is the MAT program something you’re passionate about?
I was a competitive gymnast from second grade to high school, and then in high school I was a diver and a cheerleader. I have always loved sports and been intrigued by injuries. I had an injury to my achilles tendon and went to a ‘sports medicine physician’ who incorrectly diagnosed me and I was out of sports for months. I went to a Certified Athletic Trainer, Bob Nicollette, and he correctly diagnosed me within minutes and I was able to return to activity within a week. I knew then I wanted to be an athletic trainer. The Gannon MAT program in Ruskin gives me the ability to give back to my profession by teaching individuals the knowledge and tools to succeed in the field of athletic training.
How did you end up at Gannon?
In 2014, I was hired by Gannon as a consultant to help the Erie campus’ MAT program gain CAATE (Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education) accreditation. I made a visit to the campus and immediately knew Gannon was a great place to be employed. The Administration truly supported the athletic training field. When the Ruskin campus offered the MAT program, I knew it was a place I wanted to be employed.
What are the differences between choosing Ruskin or main campus to pursue the program?
Both Erie and Ruskin are great places to get a Gannon education in athletic training. Currently, the Erie campus offers a 3 year undergraduate +2 year graduate to receive the MAT degree. The Ruskin campus is a two year stand-alone graduate degree for individuals who have already completed their bachelor’s degree. Ruskin offers beautiful weather year-round. The proximity of the Ruskin campus to Tampa offers a wide variety of clinical sites for the MAT students.
What is something prospective students should know about the program?
As the program director, I have been a certified athletic trainer for over 25 years and have been teaching athletic training for 15 years. I have a wide variety of experience and knowledge to share with the students. The Gannon-Ruskin MAT program is student-centered and will prepare students to practice successfully as an athletic trainer.
Students interested in the Master of Athletic Training program can find more information on the program and apply here.