Meet Drew Orr, a second-year student in our Master of Athletic Training program from Iowa City, IA. After graduating in 2015 with his Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences degree from Drake, Drew was one of our pioneer students, as a member of our inaugural MAT class!
Throughout undergrad, I wanted to go to physical therapy school. After working with a physical therapist in my capstone experience, I wasn’t sure it was right for me. Dr. Newman and Dr. Brady told me about the athletic training program and it seemed like a great fit!
My professional goal is to be the best version of myself wherever I end up working. As for a dream job, I would love to eventually work for a professional or Division 1 collegiate team. I am open to exploring the field of athletic training and finding the area that fits me best!
At the beginning of the program we had two-week rotations that really allowed us to dip our feet in the waters and learn about many different sites athletic trainers can work in. The next semester we had two different six-week rotations that gave me the opportunity to get a more in depth feel of both traditional and non-traditional settings. Moving forward, we have summer and fall immersion experiences ahead us. The purpose of these sites will be to give us the full experience of what it is like to be an athletic trainer in selected settings. We will be at these sites for 40 hours a week and will be able to learn and grow in ways that would otherwise be impossible.
It has really given me the opportunity to see how the profession of athletic training is able to translate to a number of different fields. Experiential learning allows students to see the daily life of athletic trainers and the little things that can’t be found in a textbook or classroom.
At one of my experiential sites I was given the opportunity to remove surgical staples from a patient who had surgery. It was a great experience and I am grateful that the experiential sites have allowed me to have moments like this.
I chose Drake for undergraduate school because I was able to see that you are more than a number in so many ways. That is something that sets Drake apart from larger schools for me. For graduate school, Dr. Newman and Dr. Brady sold me on the program and already being a Drake student made the decision easier.
My experiences are helping build a foundation of knowledge that will be vital in the profession of athletic training. The biggest aspects of my academic experience that are helping the most would be the hands-on experience that you get. Throughout my time I have already been able to feel multiple torn ACLs and perform special tests on them, I’ve been able to learn how to suture lacerations, and so much more.
I would say that one of biggest accomplishments at Drake would have to be finishing up my first semester in the program because it was very hectic, difficult, and challenged me as a student in ways I had never faced before. Another accomplishment would have to be completing my literature review for research while taking difficult courses like pathophysiology and pharmacology during the second semester of the program.
While practicing IV insertion in class, I got to insert an IV in Dr. Newman’s arm. It’s not every day you get to do something like that!
Trust your professors. At Drake you are so much more than a number and they will help guide you through this journey. You just need to be willing to put in the hard work and try your best every day.