Anderson University athletic training major Allee Donaghy tore her MCL, ACL, and both menisci when she was a high school freshman. At the time of her injury she had no idea that it would be an event to shape the rest of her life.
“Going through intense rehab and being around physical therapists, orthopedic doctors, and athletic trainers, and seeing their love and devotion toward their patients and athletes, I learned I wanted to be just like them someday,” Donaghy said.
Donaghy has played sports her entire life and continues to compete at the highest level as she is an integral leader on the women's volleyball team. The Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference recognized Donaghy’s excellence and hard work with First Team All-Conference honors at the conclusion of this past season.
The athletic training program at AU challenges students with a rigorous course load and a considerable time commitment of logging hands-on hours with the different varsity athletic teams. “When I came to the athletic training Discovery Day in March of 2008, I fell in love with the AT staff and the amazing sports medicine center,” said Donaghy.
In the fall semester of 2010, Donaghy learned of an athletic training internship at IMG Performance Academies in Bradenton, Fla., and she jumped at the opportunity. “I requested more information immediately,” Donaghy said. “They responded quickly asking for a résumé, a letter telling them why I wanted to work with them, and three recommendation letters.” After she submitted all of the requested materials, Donaghy waited for the interview process to begin.
When spring break rolled around, Donaghy traveled Florida and took time out of her vacation to visit the IMG campus. “I met with the director and the head ATC, and then I got a tour of the 500-acre campus,” said Donaghy. She believes that this visit worked to her advantage, as she was ultimately selected for the internship.
The internship began on May 28 and ended August 10. “That summer gave me tons of practice and confidence to grow on,” Donaghy said.
Her days started at 7 a.m. with taping, evaluating, treating, and stretching athletes. She would move on to cover practices on the basketball courts or at the lacrosse, football, or baseball fields. In the afternoons, Donaghy repeated her routine of treatments and practice coverage until 5 or 6 p.m. At the end of her work day, often a 10-hour day, Donaghy kept her upcoming senior volleyball season in mind and mustered the energy to work out.
On the job, Donaghy came into contact with a number of high profile athletes. IMG hosted the NFL Rookie Symposium, so she ran into Cam Newton and other popular athletes. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers held camp at IMG, Olympic sprinters trained at the Bradenton campus, and Under Armor held football tournaments for the highest rated and most talented high school players in the country at the facility.
Contact with these athletes, along with networking with professionals in the athletic training field sent Donaghy back to Indiana with invaluable experience. “I learned so many new manual techniques and rehab ideas,” said Donaghy. “And I got to meet so many different people and now have connections with people from all over the world.”
— Kyle Beckman is a senior from Auburn, Ind., majoring in communication arts and business/information systems and minoring in political science. Beckman is an associate with Fifth Street Communications™, writing on behalf of the Anderson University Office of University Communications.
Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,600 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, education, music, nursing, and theology.