Leah Dell, a junior in the Athletic Training Program at USM, had quite the successful weekend when she attended the Eastern Athletic Trainers’ Association (EATA) Annual Meeting and Clinical Symposium Jan 8 – 11 in Boston.
Dell not only came away as the recipient of the EATA’s Kerkor “KoKo” Kassabian District One Scholarship, but also won the association’s student quiz bowl. The quiz bowl victory assures her a place in the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) student quiz bowl as the representative for District One of the EATA.
District One of the EATA is made up of the states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut.
To Dell’s knowledge, she is the first student from USM to ever compete, let alone win, the quiz bowl.
“I was really excited about both the scholarship and the Quiz Bowl,” said Dell. “It kind of affirms my decision to study athletic training. I knew I was a good student within USM before this, but going out into the region and competing showed me what I am capable of.”
The Quiz Bowl challenged participants with questions in athletic training content areas such as injury assessment, therapeutic exercise and professional responsibility. After taking the lead approximately one-third of the way through the competition, Dell correctly answered the final question, solidifying her Quiz Bowl victory.
The NATA’s national student Quiz Bowl will take place at the association’s Annual Meeting and Clinical Symposium on June 22 – 25 in Baltimore, Maryland.
The scholarship, named for the long time athletic trainer at Northeastern University, is valued at $3,000. Dell was also presented with a celebratory plaque at the EATA awards ceremony. A student in the USM Honors Program and a Resident Assistant on campus, Dell attributes her involvement in various campus activities along with the knowledge she received in the classroom as reasons why she earned the scholarship.
After winning the scholarship, Dell was approached by Dr. Brian Toy, director of the Athletic Training Education Program at USM, to compete in the quiz bowl since she would be at the meeting to accept the scholarship.
“I honestly wasn’t sure how it would go,” said Dell. “I figured it would be a fun way to test my knowledge and try something new.”
“By being awarded the Eastern Athletic Trainers’ Association’s Kerkor ‘Koko’ Kassabian Scholarship, and by winning the Quiz Bowl, Leah has demonstrated, on a national stage, the academic successes she experiences on an everyday basis as a student in USM’s Athletic Training Program,” said Toy. “In addition, these accomplishments have once again highlighted the quality of both the students enrolled in USM’s Athletic Training Program and of those alumni currently working throughout the country in the field of Athletic Training.”
“USM has a really strong Athletic Training program, academics-wise, so I feel like the combination of good professors who really pushed me, and my own work ethic gave me a solid background of knowledge for the Quiz Bowl,” said Dell. “I got a bunch of questions right during it that not many other students were able to answer.”
Dell’s sponsor for the scholarship, USM alum and Thornton Academy Athletic Trainer Tony Giordano ’08, supervised Leah’s athletic training student clinical experience at Thornton Academy during the Fall 2015 semester.
“Education is about so much more than just the classroom,” added Dell. “I have definitely taken advantage of a lot of opportunities that USM has to offer.”
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