When Becka Owens was in high school, she injured herself in the middle of basketball season and needed surgery on both of her legs. While the incident was heartbreaking, an athletic trainer helped her get back on the court.
“I want to be that person who takes someone by the hand and says, ‘Let’s do this! Let’s get you better today.’”
Now, as an athletic training major, Becka is helping people every day by covering a blister, assessing an injury, or leading them through rehab. “Seeing people progress, get better, and start to get back on the field is amazing, and knowing that I helped them achieve that makes me feel so amazing.”
“Everything is so hands-on and so interactive that I’m learning skills while putting them to use.”
“I hope to become the head athletic trainer at a college somewhere out west. I’m also considering getting a masters in nutrition and want to develop meal plans for student athletes.”
How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?
“Jake Dinauer is one of the best teachers I’ve ever had. He’s awesome! He takes the time to interact with his students and I think since we can interact with Jake outside of the classroom, in the athletic training room, working with him, etc., it makes the relationship between him and his students that much better. He lets us dive right into work and challenges us. He also lets us learn from our mistakes and really makes us responsible for ourselves.”
“My favorite class so far is probably my Principles Skills class I had spring semester my sophomore year with Laurie Jensen. It was an amazing class and it laid the groundwork for everything I was going to learn from there on out.”
“I’m Carthage’s representative on the Wisconsin Athlete Trainers’ Association (WATA) Student Senate. I am also a member of Alpha Lambda Delta, but we like to joke and say that athletic training is a fraternity in itself. Alpha Tau! Also, be on the lookout for a sports medicine club popping up within the next few months.”
“The toughest class I was in was Literary Skills my first semester freshman year. I was already freaking out about my first college classes and I walked into this class on the first day and the teacher told us that it was a class for English majors. I was literally the only freshman in the room. I was so confused for the first few weeks and had no idea how to drop the class, but I toughed it out, made it out alive, with a decent grade, and my writing skills improved because of it.”
Opportunities at Carthage
“Through Carthage and the athletic training program, I was hired by the Medical College of Wisconsin to do concussion research with our football, soccer, and lacrosse teams. I get to work with some huge names, including Dr. Michael McCrea, a huge player in concussion research. He even works with the NFL.”
Favorite moments and memories at Carthage
“I think all the time I’ve spent with my friends, as cliche as that sounds, are the best moments as well as the fun I’ve had meeting new people over the years. I met one of best friends on the first day during orientation. I also remember the huge campus-wide snowball fight that broke out my freshman year.”
Favorite spot on campus
“I practically live the TARC nowadays so I’m a bit biased, but off the sports fields and away from the TARC, I’m obsessed with the beach.”
Biggest surprise so far
“The biggest surprise for me is learning that Carthage is smaller than some people’s high schools! I graduated from a class of 30 people so this school seems huge to me, but some people aren’t used to how small it is.”
What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?
“I think my 8-year-old self would think it’s pretty cool that I get to work with all the athletes and help people. I mean, I think it’s pretty cool now!”
Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?
“I would tell other students to work as hard as they can. I always tell people that ask me to devote themselves to the major if it’s really something they want and are passionate about. Work hard and it all pays off in the end.”