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Athletic Training Team

Athletic Training Students Gain Medical Experience Supporting More Than 17,000 Runners

More than 17,000 SunTrust Richmond Marathon, McDonald's Half Marathon and HCA Virginia 8K runners crossed the downtown finish line on Nov. 12. After their moment of triumph, they were greeted by a supporting medical team of 17 Longwood University athletic training students practicing alongside CJW Sports Medicine nurses and physicians. Several of the physicians also work as instructors in Longwood's Athletic Training Education Program.

Dr. Doug Cutter, director of CJW Sports Medicine in Richmond, has been involved with the Richmond Marathon through Longwood University since 2004, when he began teaching at the school. Dr. Cutter serves as medical director of Longwood's Athletic Training Education Program and each year works with program director Sharon Menegoni to bring 15 to 20 students to serve as the primary medical care providers at the races' finish line.

At 3 a.m. on race day, students and program staff members departed Longwood's campus for Richmond to begin prepping the first aid area. From 7 a.m. until 3:30 p.m., the team was ready and waiting to provide runners with support as needed. Dr. Cutter and Menegoni advised students to walk with the event participants, hold them up and stay with them after they had completed the race. Students closely observed the runners, looking for any indications of medical need. To see the students in action, check out Part 3 of NBC 12's marathon coverage.

"This is an incredible opportunity for students to not only work with trained medical staff but work in a clinical setting as well, undergoing real triage cases in a mass participation event," said Dr. Cutter. "I don't know of any other program that provides this level of exposure."

Students in the program work toward certification as medical professionals in the prevention, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of injuries to athletes and others who are engaged in everyday physical activities.

Learn more about Longwood's Athletic Training Education Program