Waynesburg professor lectures A.W. Beattie students, praises Sports Medicine program

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Waynesburg University’s Joseph Shaffer, the Program Director of Athletic Training and Exercise Science programs, recently led our Sports Medicine program through a college lecture on functional mobility.

The lecture focused on tools brought by Shaffer and their purpose before students put them to use.

“We came down to the lab, and we were able to demonstrate the theories we discussed in practice,” Shaffer said. “We should be striving to see functional movement in our patients. If we do, we can identify abnormalities that we need to focus to develop those movement capabilities so that they’re not compensating or increasing risk of injury in the future.”

Having guests from regional universities benefits students in class and beyond, said Sports Medicine instructor Mr. Darren Vtipil.

“I can talk until I’m blue in the face about what college is like, but it’s not the same as having someone come in here from that environment,” Sports Medicine instructor Mr. Darren Vtipil said. “He did a college-level lecture today, and the more exposure like this for students the easier college will be. I’m already seeing that with some students who I’ve had who are now in college.”

A.W. Beattie reached out to several universities, including Waynesburg, years ago when it was forming the now three-year old program.

“The (Sports Medicine) program here really matched up with Waynesburg University’s mission of what we’re trying to do with our students, and because of that it really grew into a great partnership and relationship,” Shaffer said. “We’ve continued to evolve to where it is today where we’re actually really able to benefit each other and the students.”

Two A.W. Beattie Sports Medicine students, who could earn seven college credits to Waynesburg through the career center, have received acceptance letters from the University to this point in the school year.

“We’re hoping to see our first Beattie students next year, and we’re excited to see how this program prepared them to branch out for future success,” Shaffer said. “The success of the college program really depends on the outreach and students’ understanding of what is offered. With how expensive student tuition is, it’s critical to have students who understand what the career path is. A partnership like this does that, and students coming out of (Beattie’s) program should know if they really like it.”

Shaffer will plan a return with Mr. Vtipil for lectures on other topics.

“Any time I can get out in front of students interested in this type of profession or healthcare in general, I embrace those opportunities because I love seeing their faces and excitement,” Shaffer said. “That’s really why I got into education.”

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