1. Career Center is a great resource to find or post a job or even see what type of job is trending
2. Opportunities for continuing education and professional development.
3. Government affairs and advocacy
4. Networking and social media communities
5. Access to Journal of Athletic Training.
I believe that point number 3 is often neglected. As certified athletic trainers, we need to take some ownership to advocate for our profession. I believe we often take the wrong mindset of “what can the NATA do for me” or “what has NATA done with such and such situation.” I believe that I am not the only one who gets frustrated and tired in hearing this type of outcry. The REAL question that we should ask is, “what can I do to help the NATA?” The reality is… any professional organization set up is developed for the benefit of its members and in order for the organization to be successful and alive, it is up to each and every member to play an active role. The apathy is reflected on the recent NATA presidential election. Our response rate is embarrassingly low. Too many people seem to only care about the negative challenges facing our profession. Why can we not celebrate the positives? Can we hear stories from people about how they were able to contribute to a change in their organization? Please share them in the comments section!
Athletic training is a thriving profession. Thriving professions make decisions and solve problems. If we identify that we have problems (such as with internships and low pay), we need to put our thinking caps on and figure out why our value is under appreciated by external stakeholders. As National Athletic Training Month is ending, I want to challenge and encourage you all to continue to advocate and educate. My hope is that this attitude does not only happen in the month of March.
-Denny Wongosari LAT, ATC