Mount St. Joseph University

Student Athlete Tees up Career Path

By: Sasha Feldmann

File Under: athletictraining, golf

When Carissa Pitts came to the Mount, she discovered a variety of choices for how to spend her college experience. She didn’t expect the amount of learning and extracurricular opportunities available to her. Deciding to major in Athletic Training, Carissa also chose to play for the Mount’s women’s golf team. She is a National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III athlete, which has enabled her to do what she loves at a competitive level and still focus on her studies. She began to consider her possible future career paths through hands-on learning methods, while still playing the sport she enjoys.

Finding a Balance

Along with being a member of the School of Health Sciences, Carissa is the Secretary and Treasurer of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), a club that allows Mount student athletes to be involved in the NCAA. SAAC members can attend conferences and gain insight on the rules and regulations that affect student athlete life on campus. Carissa works alongside the club president and vice president. She is responsible for encouraging students to join by promoting the club’s events as well as handling the club’s finances.

Carissa’s professors are always willing to help make sure her commitment to her education and her life as a NCAA Division III athlete are both possible. In addition, they continue to provide her with real-world learning experience.

A World of Opportunities

Carissa has found that there are many possible professions available to students studying health sciences. Health Sciences is a broad field of disciplines, including Athletic Training, Nursing, Physician Assistant Studies, and Physical Therapy. Many of the students in her department have chosen careers that are not specific to their major. Carissa also has the option to pursue graduate studies at the Mount in Physical Therapy or Physician Assistant Studies if she chooses. For now, she is exploring her options in the field of Athletic Training.

During the second year of her program, she will be working alongside a professional high school Athletic Trainer as a requirement for her major. This will allow her to explore the kind of setting and environment in which she might want to work. “The more I begin to learn about the profession as a student, the more I realize that this is what I want to do as a future career,” Carissa says, “The Mount is a university of many opportunities.”