“But Coach, I don’t know how to play goalie!!!” A thirteen year old me screamed to my middle school field hockey coach as she and my teammates suggested tossing me in the net at practice. I didn’t even know how to strap into the pads or how to hold the stick. The fear and excitement of something new was taking over. At this point in time I had been in love with the sport for four years and I thought I knew everything there was to know abo
ut it….Well I was dead wrong.
My previous position was defense and I thought how much different could it be really, besides getting the ball shot directly at you….. By the end of that season not only was the team I played for undefeated Tri-County Champions, I recorded a shut out season. That one season of playing goalie in middle school led me here, to Plymouth State University where I was a goalie on the field hockey team for a brief period of time my freshman year. More importantly that one season of middle school field hockey ingrained the love of everything sports related into my soul. I continued to play field hockey all four years of high school (not as a goalie though) and if I hadn’t I don’t think I would be on the same path that I am now. I would’ve gone to law school, like I told my dad I would do at the age of eight.
Field hockey connected me to the person that would change the direction of my education and my life, the athletic trainer that worked at my high school. Two weeks into my junior year I knew what I wanted to pursue in college, it wasn’t until the end of my senior year that I knew Plymouth State was going to be my home. Spending my freshman year here at PSU as an athletic training major was the most enlightening experience I’ve ever had. Plot twist: I did not return to PSU for my sophomore year. I spent the next three years at Northern Essex Community College sifting through majors and programs figuring my life out. After graduating with two associates degrees in 2016 I decided to take a year off to research the best way to finish my bachelors degree. With the help of my amazing advisor/mentor Dr. Linda Levy, I ended up here in Plymouth State’s Interdisciplinary Studies Program.
During this year off from school I spent time reconnecting with my love of sports as well as researching undergraduate and graduate degree programs. While I was in school at Northern Essex in 2015 I was named an assistant varsity coach for the Pelham High School field hockey team. As the season went on I realized how important athletic trainers are to
sports teams, especially high school sports. After being named the head coach of the Pelham Memorial School field hockey team during my year off from school in 2016 I solidly knew I was going to continue to pursue an education in athletic training to give back to the athletic community that shaped me into the leader and student I am today.
I tailored my program, Sports Medicine, to cover all the prerequisites for the graduate school program I had my eye on: PSU’s MS in Athletic Training Professional Program. As of a few weeks ago my application was accepted and I can truly from the bottom of my heart thank the Plymouth IDS Department and my middle school field hockey coach for moving me in the direction of my goal of becoming a certified athletic trainer.