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Public Health Intern learns aside a strength coach to better performance of high school athletes

Eleanor Weiker '24

A search for sports medicine internships led Eleanor Weiker ’24, a self-designed major in Public Health at The College of Wooster, to the Nationwide Children’s Hospital, located in Westerville, Ohio. The APEX Fellow who is also an environmental studies minor, worked with a strength and conditioning coach at a high school. While learning the basics of coaching, Weiker also focused on improving the form and performance of student athletes. Through her role, Weiker developed strong speaking skills, and is on track to obtain a strength coach certification.  

“I gained a lot of confidence when speaking with kids or groups. I also learned a lot about thinking on my feet while instructing.” 

—Eleanor Weiker ’24 

How did you learn about the internship opportunity for your APEX Fellowship?  

“I was looking up sports medicine internships, and found this one with a strength and conditioning coach who worked with high schoolers, and was offered the internship through The Nationwide Children’s Hospital. While it wasn’t directly sports medicine related, it still fit my interests, and I enjoyed the emphasis on intern learning and growth.” 

What were some of the things you did each day?  

“Most days I observed lifts, provided tips on form and technique, and completed general weight room management. I was most interested in conversations I had with my coach, and how he programmed lifts for various levels, equipment availability, and group size. One unique thing I did was work with a younger soccer player who had never lifted before. He lacked the strength and technique to do many of the lifts, so I helped modify the lift and instruct him three times a week.” 

Who was your fellowship mentor and how did they help you to succeed in this position? 

“My mentor was Angela Bos, professor of political science, and I appreciated her support throughout the internship. I benefited from her assuring me that my feelings about the internship were normal. In the beginning, I felt unsure of my role and responsibilities, and she told me that that was normal for people at that stage.  

Eleanor Weiker '24What are some skills you’ve learned that you see yourself carrying forward in your career? 

“I gained a lot of confidence when speaking with kids or groups. I also learned a lot about thinking on my feet while instructing groups. Weather, number of kids, experience, space, and equipment availability all caused last-minute changes to be made to lifts.” 

How has the internship helped you to see what’s next for you?  

“While I still hope to pursue a career in sports medicine instead of sports performance, I do plan on getting my strength coach certification next summer, and working in that role during graduate school.” 

Posted in Experiential Learning on August 15, 2022.


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Environmental Studies

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