Springfield College Athletic Training Legacy of Excellence on Display at EATA Conference | Springfield College

Springfield College Athletic Training Legacy of Excellence on Display at EATA Conference


By: Damon Markiewicz

March was National Athletic Training Month, and it was the perfect time to recognize the Springfield College Athletic Training (AT) program’s legacy of excellence, which was on full display at the 2024 Eastern Athletic Trainers’ Association (EATA) annual convention. Current faculty, students, and alumni, showcased the AT program’s long-standing tradition in preparing athletic trainers for successful careers, dating back to 1925.

“It’s always very clear during the EATA weekend that Springfield College is very well respected by the EATA leadership, as well as other colleges and institutions,” explained Springfield College Assistant Professor of Exercise Science and Athletic Training/Coordinator of Clinical Education Brett A. Winston, G’14, PhD ’18, who serves on the EATA Executive Board as the NATA District One Secretary. “During the EATA weekend, Springfield College is constantly recognized as being a leader within the AT profession, with faculty members serving as experts and guest speakers in breakout sessions and workshops.”

During this year’s event, Athletic Training Program Director Jessica Barrett ’05, Assistant Professor of Athletic Training and Fieldwork Coordinator Matt Mills, and Class of 2024 doctoral student Tina Riordan, represented the College as guest speakers at multiple workshops. In addition, Mills served as the chair of the EATA David Moyer Award Committee. The award is presented to a team physician that has served the profession of athletic training as an educator and an advocate.

“The conference provides an opportunity for faculty to showcase their expertise and research to their peers, and it also allows our current students to network with faculty and alumni outside of the classroom setting,” described Winston, who also serves as the EATA Quiz Bowl Committee Chair.

The EATA Quiz Bowl is a Jeopardy-style competition for AT students from education programs, accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). The students compete for a district Quiz Bowl trophy, and the top three winners represent District 1 at the NATA conference in June. Springfield College graduate student Grace Brennan ’22 finished in third place at this year’s competition, and will be one of the three District 1 representatives at the national convention.

“It was an honor to represent Springfield College during the Quiz Bowl, and it was really exciting and such a valuable experience,” explained Brennan, who also earned the prestigious EATA District 1 Kerkor "Koko" Kassabian Scholarship for her achievements within the athletic training field. “It was a great experience competing with my peers, and building such strong connections with so many professionals in the AT field.”

Joining Brennan in the award’s circle was Joanne Farias, a member of the Class of 2024, and recipient of the Athletic Trainers of Massachusetts (ATOM) College Scholarship. Farias received her honor based on a combination of academic achievement, character, and athletic training skills. Both Farias and Brennan came back to Alden Street understanding that the EATA experience will only help them on their road to becoming successful AT professionals.

“EATA was a great experience this year, we were able to participate in hands-on workshops,” explained Brennan. “Some of the workshops were on exertional heat stroke care, wound management, bleeding emergencies, and concussion evaluations. All the lectures in the student programs were very valuable.”

Leading up to EATA, the student-led Athletic Training Club, and the Graduate Student Organization (GS0), assisted in making sure current students had the opportunity to take advantage of the conference. Approximately 18 to 20 current students took part at this year’s event.

“Having the student clubs assist with funding to assure students can attend is so valuable,” added Winston, who serves as the faculty advisor for the student-led AT club on campus. “This collaboration allows for the Springfield College presence at EATA conference to be that much stronger, and it allows for more students to receive this valuable experience during their academic journey.”

Springfield College AT Legacy

Springfield College School of Physical Education, Performance and Sport Leadership Dean Sue Guyer, DPE’03, and long-time Director of the Springfield College Athletic Training Program Mary Barnum, G’90, were recognized for their work as co-chairs of the EATA Education Summit.

In addition, the Charles J. Redmond Scholarship was presented during the conference, an award named after our very own Charlie Redmond ’68, G’71, who spent more than 20 years as the Springfield College head athletic trainer. Redmond spent more than five decades on campus as a student and faculty member, including serving as the dean of the School of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation, and leading as chair of the Department of Exercise Science and Sport Studies. Over the years, numerous Springfield College AT students have been the recipients of this scholarship.

Also, Marc Wysocki, G’96, received the Frank George Doctoral Scholarship during EATA 2024.