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Day in the Life of an Athletic Trainer

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A Day in the Life of an Athletic Trainer…:

Social Services: Homeless Shelter A Day in the Life of an Athletic Trainer… © 2011 National Athletic Trainers Association www.nata.org

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Mark Nienhuis, ATC, brings a whole new meaning to social service in his job as wellness coordinator with Catholic Charities. Using his skills and knowledge as an athletic trainer, Nienhuis is lending a helping hand to those who need him most– the homeless. © 2011 National Athletic Trainers’ Association www.nata.org (800)TRY-NATA Mark manages the health and wellness programs for needy individuals in the Joliet area. He provides the following services: Health education classes Health screenings and assessments Access and links to human service & advocacy Personal health/wellness counseling The people he treats are: Ages 22-59 Most are homeless

I Am An Athletic Trainer Working In:

I Am An Athletic Trainer Working In Name: Mark Nienhuis, ATC Title: Wellness Coordinator Employer: Catholic Charities Diocese of Joliet Job location: Joliet, Illinois Mark Nienhuis, ATC is using his athletic training skills to help provide care for under- privileged and homeless individuals. Social Services

A Day in the life of an Social Services Athletic Trainer:

A Day in the life of an Social Services Athletic Trainer Educational Background: Degree: Bachelor of Science from the University of Northern Illinois Major: Fitness Leadership Minor: Sports Medicine with an emphasis in Cardiac Rehabilitation Additional Training Stephen Minster Training Non-violent crisis intervention training program.

Catholic Charities of Joliet: An Overview :

Catholic Charities of Joliet: An Overview Established in 1949 Day Break, one facet of the charity, is a 24-hour emergency homeless shelter One of 52 programs within the Diocese of Joliet, Ill Brings members of the community, church, business, healthcare and government together to develop effective responses to human needs Provides professional human services Advocates for a just and compassionate society

Catholic Charities- Staff:

Catholic Charities- Staff 315 employees company-wide ranging from social workers to counselors. I am the only athletic trainer working here. I am the only athletic trainer at my location and am responsible for the health and wellness of children, families and seniors. Several nurses are employed at Catholic Charities, too.

A Day in the Life of a Social Services Athletic Trainer:

A Day in the Life of a Social Services Athletic Trainer A typical schedule for my job is: 35-hours per week 5 days per week 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

A Day in the life of a Social Service Athletic Trainer:

A Day in the life of a Social Service Athletic Trainer Salary range $33,000-$43,000 Employee benefits Estimated worth = $12,000 Medical Dental Vision Life LTD Pension 403B Vacation Sick days Holiday

Daily Duties- Morning:

Daily Duties- Morning Check and respond to e-mail and voicemail. Issues are: referrals to medical/dental services, assistance with medical bills, prescription assistance, anger management program, health crisis Set up and monitor volunteers leading the health education classes Check and respond to computer information regarding the clients we serve. I ensure the staff is informed about details of client crises– suicide, 911 calls, outbreaks of lice, MRSA, etc. Meet with clients during scheduled appointments I meet with the homeless, low income community residents Meet with about three individuals per day Meetings are about 45 minutes each We discuss various health/wellness needs © 2011 National Athletic Trainers’ Association www.nata.org (800)TRY-NATA

Daily Duties-Afternoon:

Daily Duties-Afternoon Meet with clients during scheduled appointments. Case management Teach health/wellness classes Topics include: stress/anger management, fitness, hygiene, disease prevention, substance abuse, mental health, spirituality Classes last one hour Complete client case notes SOAP format Enter services rendered into computer General service needs include: wellness programs, health care, mental health care & counseling, prescription expense assistance and advocacy © 2011 National Athletic Trainers’ Association www.nata.org (800)TRY-NATA

Other Duties:

Other Duties Back to School Fair Health Committee Chair Health services advisory committee for Catholic Charities Meet semi-annually Purpose of committee is to provide educational services and technical assistance to staff We review and make suggestions to written plans, documents and menus Other members of the Board: MDs, DDS, Nurses, Parents, Head Start Staff Serve on the Will Co. Coalition of Illinois breast and cervical cancer program I wear all hats if needed www.nata.org (800)TRY-NATA

On-Site Client Meetings & Programs:

On-Site Client Meetings & Programs Three client appointments per day One hour a day in meetings Provide presentations to employees or management General meetings with Safety Director, HR Manager, Occupational Health Nurse, etc. One hour per day teaching health education Three hours per day providing direct client service One hour teaching health education One hour a day answering e-mails, telephone calls, etc. One hour a day coordinating and developing wellness programs and services

The Path Less Followed:

The Path Less Followed As an athletic training student I wanted to work in the high-school setting. My first job was as an outreach athletic trainer in a sports medicine clinic. I made a career change because I had a strong desire to work with a needier population. So I worked hard in seeking out and getting my current job.

The Learning Curve:

The Learning Curve Improvement of time-management skills to accommodate a higher work load in a fast-paced environment Would have benefited from knowing more about the homeless population, including: Their special needs Poor health Mental Illness Disabilities Life skills Addiction The medical conditions that affect them. Some examples include Diabetes Asthma Communicable diseases Mental illness Depression Heart Disease

Essential Skill Sets to Work in Social Services:

Essential Skill Sets to Work in Social Services Caring attitude Integrity Communication Skills Interpersonal Skills Sense of Humor

Where I Find Additional & Helpful Information About the Social Service Setting::

Where I Find Additional & Helpful Information About the Social Service Setting: Books The Health Care of Homeless Persons by James J. O’Connell, MD National Health care for the Homeless Council: www.nhchc.org Web sites: Medlineplus.org Conferences/Symposiums Partners in Action (Through the IL Public Health Institute) Associations/Organizations NATA Illinois Athletic Trainers’ Association Campaign for Better Health Care United Church of Christ

Learn more at www.nata.org:

Learn more at www.nata.org Visit Career Development Resources on NATA Web site and find: - Videos - Brochures - PowerPoint Presentations - Studies - Marketing Materials - Advisors to assist with your specific questions *NATA members only section http://www.nata.org/members1/CareerDevelopment/index.cfm Visit Career Development Resources TODAY © 2011 National Athletic Trainers’ Association www.nata.org (800)TRY-NATA

Still need more information about Athletic Trainers in Social Services? :

Still need more information about Athletic Trainers in Social Services? Contact the NATA National Office Staff: Kathryn Ayres, PR and Marketing Coordinator KathrynA@nata.org | 800-879-6282 ext. 138 Write to Mark Nienhuis: niener7@hotmail.com

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Looking for a JOB? Want to hire an athletic trainer? www.nata.org/careercenter Visit the NATA Career Center today and find resources to help you find a job or hire an athletic trainer. © 2011 National Athletic Trainers’ Association www.nata.org (800)TRY-NATA