Bower also returned with the 2017 GLATA Outstanding Educator Award and a decorative desk clock commemorating the presentation.
“I was very honored,” said Bower, whose previous stops in the athletic training field have included Stebbins and Alter High Schools. “It’s very validating that you’re on the right track and doing what you need to be doing to educate students and help them go on to excel in this field. We have many graduates that have gone on to have successful athletic careers in all levels.”
Something else that came home with the Wright State contingent was a giant head shot of Bower’s that appeared on stage with her while she was accepting the award.
“It got hijacked by a couple of our graduate assistants who attended and then they proceeded to take pictures of themselves with Becky all over the conference and on the way home and at Wright State,” she laughed. “They had a tremendous amount of fun with the photo. It was pretty interesting getting photos of them with my photo all over the place.”
Bowers, who has degrees from the College of Wooster and Illinois State, has been working and teaching in the athletic training field since 1984, the last 19 years of which have been at Wright State.
Among the former students in the program Bower directs at WSU are baseball trainer Brad Muse and men’s soccer trainer Adam Horseman.
“We have a long history of turning out strong grads,” Bower said. “The program has been accredited since 2001.”
Bower currently is leading the transition of the program to the master’s level.
“It’s sort of like what (physical therapy) and (occupational therapy) did at one point,” she said. “It’s moving out of undergrad education into the graduate level. That’s our big push right now.”
The national mandate is for all programs to be moved to graduate level by 2022, but Bower has WSU on pace to make the move in the fall of 2018 “or at the latest the fall of 2019.”