The 2015-2016 school year brought many changes to the North Central University Athletics Department. One of those changes came in the summer when Karmen De Zeeuw was hired to be the new athletic trainer for the Rams.
De Zeeuw’s job description entails helping all North Central athletes in the prevention, rehabilitation, and care of injuries during their athletic season, but she would tell you that is just one aspect of her job.
De Zeeuw grew up in Iowa and excelled as an athlete, receiving a scholarship offer to play Division I volleyball for the University of Minnesota, but turned it down and decided to play for Division III Bethel University of Arden Hills, Minnesota.
Initially, De Zeeuw studied biology and medicine, looking to work in the medical field, but a serious injury early on in her collegiate career changed all of that.
After spending hours upon hours in the training room rehabbing her injury, De Zeeuw found a new passion for the work of an athletic trainer.
“I discovered that athletic training was the absolute best way I could serve others,” De Zeeuw said. “And that is ultimately what I want to do with my life, is be a servant.”
De Zeeuw’s desire to serve others, mixed with a passion for athletics, created the perfect mixture for her to become an athletic trainer. After graduating from Bethel and receiving her certification, De Zeeuw spent the next three years at Twin Cities Orthopedics working with athletes.
Then, this summer, out of a number of different job opportunities, De Zeeuw specifically chose to come to North Central. The chance to work in a Christian environment, and the ability to work closely with student-athletes was her rationale.
“She really does a great job communicating and talking me through what I need to do to get healthy,” said sophomore basketball player, Travis Voigt, who is currently rehabbing an Achilles injury with De Zeeuw. “You can tell that she really cares about us, on and off the court.”
De Zeeuw would say that the second, and perhaps most important aspect of her job, is the time she spends with student-athletes.
“I love my job so much because of the time I get to spend with the athletes and pouring into their lives,” De Zeeuw said. “I literally cannot wait to get to work each day.”