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Enhance Whitworth's Strengths in Graduate and Continuing Studies

Students in the near future will need a master's degree to become certified athletic trainers, and Whitworth now stands out as an option for obtaining the advanced degree. The university is launching a graduate program in athletic training, its first in the health science field.

Not only is Whitworth the lone university in Washington state with board approval for a master's program, but it's also one of the few Christian liberal arts colleges in the nation to offer it, according to Cynthia Wright, athletic training program director.

The graduate program will begin next summer, and Autumn Rollins, '18, is among the Whitworth students interested in enrolling.

Rollins, a health science major on the pre-athletic training track, is drawn to the master's program because it will allow her to gain more hands-on experience and become closer to her instructors and peers. As a transfer student, she says "having the opportunity to stay at Whitworth for my master's is comforting."

According to Wright, the master's program will allow Whitworth to continue its long tradition of excellence in athletic training, and will better prepare students for jobs and serving patients through added areas of training.

Whitworth's athletic training program has a high rate of students who pass their certification exams and a strong regional reputation among employers. "A lot of employers are really looking for our alumni," Wright says.

Rollins appreciates those aspects of the current program. Her dream is to work for a professional baseball team or the rodeo.

"When you say you go to Whitworth or are a Whitworth grad, people are impressed and say they love hiring Whitworth students," Rollins says. "It's an amazing feeling being a part of a school that has a good reputation and wants you to succeed in every aspect of life."