Athletic training program prepares students for careers in the sports industry

Trainer working with athlete

Pacific students learn through extensive hands-on experiences with athletes 

With the surge in popularity among competitive youth sports, the increase in middle-aged and older populations remaining active later in life and society becoming more aware of the effects of sports-related injuries the demand for athletic trainers has grown exponentially.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of athletic trainers is projected to grow 16% from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. Career opportunities are increasing with high school and college sports, professional and Olympic sports, doctor's offices and hospitals, fitness and wellness clinics, police and fire department and performing arts.

University of the Pacific, the only university in Northern California to offer a master’s degree in athletic training, offers students hands-on experiences with athletes, and excellent classroom and laboratory instruction from experienced faculty to help prepare them for athletic trainer positions in the sports industry.

"The focus of our program is to empower our students to become disciplined, self-reliant and responsible leaders by providing superior hands-on, student-centered learning experiences in athletic training," said TK Koesterer, director of the athletic training program. "Our clinical experiences provide students with a hands-on experience that helps them understand what it's like working with athletes and sets them up for accelerated success in their careers.”

Located on Pacific’s Stockton Campus, the Master of Science in Athletic Training program consists of 60 units taught over two years, beginning with a 10-week summer session and pre-season internship the second summer. Students learn through extensive hands-on experiences with athletes that prepare them to become highly qualified health care professional who collaborates with physicians to provide preventative services, emergency care, clinical diagnosis, therapeutic intervention and rehabilitation for athletic and patients, and pass the national certification examination.

The athletic training program also has innovative curricula that leverage the university’s opportunities in interprofessional education. Students from several School of Health Sciences programs learn with and from each other, preparing them for clinical settings where integrated teams provide optimal patient care.

“I am delighted that we have students from various health care programs take classes together so that they are immersed in the culture of interprofessional medicine that is practiced today,” said Nicoleta Bugnariu, the founding dean of the School of Health Sciences. “We’re preparing our students to be better health care leaders by providing a well-rounded wellness education.”

Pacific's athletic training program has alumni currently working for the National Football League (NFL), Major League Baseball (MLB), National Basketball Association (NBA), Oregon State University, Washington State University, and various other colleges.

Visit Pacific’s Master of Science in athletic training website to learn more about the program.