Athletic Training B.S.

The Athletic Training Program at Georgia College provides a unique educational environment because it uses an evidenced-based learning approach in which functional application skills are presented in addition to foundational didactic components. Students acquire critical thinking skills which, when combined with clinical experiences, prepare them to enter a wide range of professional athletic training settings. Graduates of our programs are able to pursue their ambitions as a healthcare professional by choosing the specific athletic training practice setting that meets their career goals.

Due to the approved and accredited degree change to the Master of Science in Athletic Training, as of March 2018, Georgia College no longer accepts applications to the Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training. The last cohort of the BS in Athletic Training is expected to graduate May 2019. No further undergraduate athletic training program will be offered. The Master of Science in Athletic Training program is currently accepting applications. For more information, go to


The undergraduate Athletic Training Program at Georgia College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). Georgia College is no longer accepting students into the undergraduate athletic training program. The last undergraduate cohort is expected to graduate in May 2019.

As part of a complete, interprofessional health care team, athletic trainers evaluate, diagnose, advise and treat patients to help them prevent and recover from injuries and illnesses. Athletic trainers relish the challenge of working with patients to achieve their individual goals by using active, functional interventions. Athletic trainers’ work settings can include high schools, colleges, universities, professional sports teams, hospitals, rehabilitation clinics, physicians’ offices, corporate and industrial institutions, the military, and the performing arts. Regardless of their practice setting, athletic trainers practice athletic training (or provide athletic training services) according to their education and state practice act. Athletic trainers provide medical services to all types of people – not just athletes participating in sports – and do not train people as personal or fitness trainers do. In other countries, athletic therapist and physiotherapist are similar titles. Athletic training is recognized by the American Medical Association (AMA), Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as an allied health care profession.

Athletic trainers must graduate from an accredited baccalaureate or master’s program. Athletic training is an academic major or graduate equivalent major program that is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). The current minimum entry point into the profession of athletic training is the baccalaureate level, however it was recently decided by the AT Strategic Alliance that the minimum professional degree level will be a master's, a change to be implemented within the next several years. Upon completion of the Georgia College CAATE-accredited athletic training education program, students become eligible for national certification by successfully completing the Board of Certification, Inc. (BOC) examination.  Currently, Georgia College offers a B.S. in Athletic Training with the current degree transitioning to the Master’s level in the near future. Students receive formal instruction in areas including evidenced-based practice, prevention and health promotion, clinical examination and diagnosis, acute care of injuries and illnesses, therapeutic interventions, psychosocial strategies and referral, healthcare 

The athletic training academic curriculum and clinical training following the medical model allows students to acquire critical thinking skills which, when combined with clinical experiences, prepare them to enter a wide range of professional athletic training settings. Professional training education uses a competency-based approach in both the classroom and clinical settings. Graduates of our programs are able to pursue their ambitions as a healthcare professional by choosing the specific athletic training practice setting that meets their career goals.

How do I become an Athletic Trainer?

1. Apply and be accepted into a CAATE-accredited program
2. Graduate from a CAATE-accredited program
3. Sit for and pass the BOC certification examination
4. Graduates from the B.S. in Athletic Training program are qualified to sit for the Board of Certification exam. Opportunities exist for employment as certified Athletic Trainers (ATs) in high schools, colleges/universities, sports medicine clinics and rehabilitation centers, hospitals, wellness/fitness centers, corporate/industrial, or other emerging practice settings. To learn more about a career in athletic training, visit these resources:

Professional Associations  

Graduation Employment Rates

Current statistics indicate 70% of ATs have a master’s degree. Georgia College AT graduates receiving a B.S. degree follow this same trend. Approximately 75% of graduating AT students continue education at the Master’s level. The remaining 25% transition straight to professional practice with a 100% employment rate. Typical settings for these students include high school athletic training positions, athletic trainer’s in the physician setting, or employment in a sports medicine/rehabilitation setting.

Median starting income for an entry level position

The average annual income for an athletic trainer was $54,832 in 2016.

The following figures represent annual income for full-time positions only and do not include bonuses or benefits.

Bachelor's Degree       $ 48,498  
Master's Degree       $ 54,695  
Doctorate       $ 81,921  

 Links to additional data on salary:

Student BOC Pass Rate
Programs must meet or exceed a three year aggregate of 70 percent first-time pass rate on the BOC exam.

3 Year
Number of students graduating from program 25 21 19 15     55
Number of students graduating from program who took examination 25 21 18 13     52
Number of students who passed the examination on the first attempt 21 19 16 12     47
Percentage of students who passed the examination on the first attempt 84 90 89 92     90
Number of students who passed the examination regardless of the number of attempts 25 21 18 13     52
Percentage of students who passed the examination regardless of the number of attempts 100 100 100 100     100


Progression within Athletic Training by Student Level Cohort (Junior to Senior)

*Note: Athletic Training Students are not majors until admitted the Junior year. Due to the approved and accredited degree change to the Master of Science in Athletic Training, as of March 2018, Georgia College did not accept applications to the Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training for Fall 2018.

    Fall 2015   Fall 2016  Fall 2017 3 Year Aggregate
Cohort Entrance Number   19 15 21 18.3
Junior to Senior Retention Number within AT       19 15 19 17.6  
Junior to Senior Rate Percentage   100% 100% 90.47% 96.8%  


Student Graduation Rate
Graduation rate (taken from United States Department of Education): Measures the progress of students who began their studies as full-time, first-time degree- or certificate seeking students by showing the percentage of these students who complete their degree or certificate within a 150% of "normal time" for completing the program in which they are enrolled.

Graduation rate is calculated as: the sum of students with a Graduated status divided by the total number of students in the cohort (excludes students with a deceased or Leave of Absence (medical) status).

    2011-2012 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015 2015-2016 2016-2017 2017-2018 3 YR Aggregate
Number of students graduating from program.       16 16 14 25 21 19 15 55  
Student Graduation Rate (%)       100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100  

Student Employment Rate

Graduate employment/placement rate: Percentage of students within 6-months of graduation that have obtained positions in the following categories: employed as an athletic trainer, employed as other, and not employed.

Employment rate is calculated as: the sum of students with a Employed as an Athletic Trainer or Employed as an Athletic Trainer and in a degree or residency program then divided by the total number of students in the cohort (excluding students with a Not Employed, due to military service and Deceased).

3 YR
Number of students Employed as AT      21      16 14 10 40  
Student Employment Rate as AT (%) 84 76 74 67 73  
Number of students employed as other 2 2 2 4 8  
Student Employment Rate as other (%) 8 10 11 27 15  
Number of students not employed 2 3 3 1 7  
Student Not Employed rate (%) 8 14 16 7 13  

Georgia College alum are employed in settings and states across the US.  Whether it be in the high school, clinic, or academia, our Athletic Training graduates continue to make their mark as healthcare professionals after their time here at Georgia College.

Joe Bowker
Undergraduate: B.S. in Athletic Training, Georgia College Class of 2010
BOC Certification: May 2010
Years Certified: 7
Master's: M.S. in Health & Human Performance, Middle Tennessee State University, Class of 2012
Graduate Assistant Program while at MTSU: Athletic Trainer for Rutherford County High Schools through National Health Care and the Tennessee Orthopedic Alliance

Joe Bowker is currently teaching Honors Health Science courses full time at Siegel High School in Murfreesboro, TN. He is also the head athletic trainer covering all sports at the 6A high school. He has been at Siegel High School for three years. He was recently awarded the Sandy Sandlin 2017 High School Athletic Trainer of the Year award for the state of Tennessee. He credits the athletic training program at Georgia College for his excellent preparation to enter the field of athletic training.


Bethani McNelly, MAT, ATC
Undergraduate: B.S. in Athletic Training, Georgia College
Master's: Masters in Arts of Teaching, Columbus State University


Bethani McNelly is currently the athletic trainer for Northside High School in Columbus, GA. She has been practicing athletic training there for the last seven years, first as a graduate assistant while completing the Hughston Athletic Training Fellowship Program at Columbus State University and then as a teacher and athletic trainer for the football team. Currently, she teaches sports medicine and is in the process of implementing a student athletic training program. Bethani hopes to share her passion for sports medicine and human anatomy with her students and to encourage them to pursue careers in the medical field.

Mike Cool, PA-C, MPAS, MEd, ATC
Undergraduate: B.S. in Athletic Training, Georgia College
Master's: Master of Education in Human Performance, Georgia College
Master's: Master of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Florida

Mike Cool works as a physician assistant for Florida Orthopaedic Associates in the north Orlando area (Deland, Orange City, and Lake Mary). He received a BS in Athletic Training from Georgia College and continued his studies at GC pursuing a Master of Education in Human Performance while working as an athletic training graduate assistant and as an athletic trainer for Piedmont Orthopaedic Complex. In August 2016, he began his position with Florida Orthopaedic Associates. He loves the people he works with and states the job can be very exciting, but notes he will never forget his roots as a bobcat AT! 

In accordance with the CAATE Standards for Accreditation the following additional fees are disclosed.


In addition to customary university fees, students majoring in athletic training are responsible for supplementary costs related to the Athletic Training Program (ATP). This may include the cost of certifications, transportation to assigned clinical field experience sites and/or observations, liability insurance, as well as the purchase of professional attire, copying/printing, and AT supplies.

*All Program Fees are listed below are subject to change!


Full -Time Students tuition varies based on In- State Tuition vs. Out of State Tuition.  On-campus housing and meal plans vary in cost depending on your selection and needs.

Physical Examination and Immunizations:

All full time students are required to submit a completed proof of immunization form prior to matriculating.  For most students, proof of adequate immunization against measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) and varicella (chicken pox) along with completion of the

Tuberculosis (TB) Risk Assessment. 

Cost: Varies depending on your immunization needs

ATP Vaccinations Requirements

Influenza Vaccination is strongly recommended annually for students involved in pre-clinical field observations and professional program clinical field experience.

Cost:  Free for students on campus.

PPD Vaccination is required annually for students involved in the professional program clinical field experiences for surgery.

Cost: $ 5.00 at GC’s Student Health Service

Student Liability Insurance

Students in the program are required to purchase student liability insurance prior to beginning clinical experiences in the program.  Policies are purchased through HPSO.

Cost: $ 38.00/year

CPR Professional Rescuer

Current CPR and First Aid certification is required for students in the Athletic Training Program.

Examples of courses that provide the above requirements include, but are not limited to:

•           CPR/AED for the Professional Rescuer through the American Red Cross

 •          BLS Healthcare Provider through the American Red Cross

 •          BLS Healthcare Provider through the American Heart Association

Cost: Approximately $ 35.00 CPR/FA Card (2-year certification)

Membership to Professional Organizations

Students are required to join NATA as a student member by their final year in the curriculum.

Cost: $60/year

Transportation to Clinical Experiences

The Program attempts to keep students local for at least one semester each year, however costs are incurred for transportation for additional semesters.

Cost: Variable - but can be significant (Approx $500/year)

Board of Certification (BOC ®) Fees

Cost:  $35 (if NATA member) Exam Fee - $300 (last semester only)

Professional Attire

Each athletic training student will be required to invest in professional attire in order to meet the standards of professional practice in clinical education field experiences.

Cost: Approximately $150 for year

Lab Fees

As a component to tuition, certain courses require athletic training students to pay lab fees. Each athletic training student will incur a clinical laboratory fee of approximately $100 during the course of the program. These fees are used to pay for the cost of teaching aids and expendable supplies.

The Athletic Training Program in the School of Health and Human Performance is a second-tier admission enrollment program. Application is made in spring of the sophomore year. You must apply and be accepted to Georgia College before applying to this major. Applications to the university are available from the Admissions Office 478-445-1283 or online here.                 


  • Acceptance to the university does not guarantee acceptance into the Athletic Training Program.
  • Completion of the B.S. in Athletic Training degree may require students to enroll in summer courses to complete degree requirements in 4 academic years.


Your complete application must include:

  1. Completed Application Form. The completed application will include all components of the application, including four (4) essays. The application must be submitted electronically (see button below). Deadline date for applications and related materials (numbers 1-6) - February 1.
  2. Three (3) completed professional recommendations (Submitted Electronically). Send the Recommendation Form to three (3) individuals who will complete a professional recommendation for you. All professional recommendations must be submitted electronically. By sending this link to each professional recommendation, applicants waive their right to review the recommendation.
  3. Copy of current certification cards (both sides) in First Aid and CPR for the Professional Rescuer. Document will be uploaded with the Athletic Training Application. Both sides of BOTH cards (First Aid and CPR for the Professional Rescuer) will need to be on one (1) page/file to upload. CPR and First Aid can be completed through the American Red Cross or the American Heart Association.
  4. Criminal background check - Complete the authorization form to allow the GC Police Department to complete a Criminal Background check. Submit the Criminal History Consent Form (pdf) directly to the GC Police Department.
  5. Signed Technical Standards Waiver (pdf)  Document will be uploaded with the Athletic Training Application
  6. Four (4) Observation Reports - All students applying to the Athletic Training Program must complete 40 hours of observation under the direct supervision of a Certified Athletic Trainer. After completing 10 hours of observation under an Athletic Trainer, submit an Observation Report to document your hours and highlight what you are learning during your observation experiences. A total of four Observation Reports must be submitted. All reports must be submitted by the Athletic Training application deadline date - February 1.


Please complete all parts of the application carefully, completely, and accurately. Be sure to answer every question. All application materials (numbers 1-6 above) MUST be received by the application due date - February 1.

All application materials must be submitted electronically. Please print and retain a hard copy of all application materials, in the incident of a transmission error. 

Online Application

The Georgia College Athletic Training Student Organization (GCATSO) is a student organization committed to advancing athletic training students in the study of the athletic training profession. This includes focusing on the prevention, recognition, evaluation, management, treatment, and/or rehabilitation/reconditioning of musculoskeletal and general medical pathologies. GCATSO facilitates and supports the advancement of relationships between students and the Georgia Athletic Trainer's Association (GATA) and the Southeast Athletic Trainers' Association (SEATA). GCATSO also provides an avenue for pre-athletic training majors to connect with students who are currently in the athletic training program. The GCATSO holds regular meetings to encourage professional relationships and fund raises throughout the year as an organization to further advance professional development opportunities within the profession.



The mission of the Athletic Training Program at Georgia College is to produce quality athletic training health care professionals through an experiential education program, who specialize in the evidence-based prevention, evaluation, treatment and rehabilitation of injuries/illnesses and exhibit the highest standards of ethical behavior and professionalism. 


Goal 1:  Athletic training students will demonstrate appropriate skill in injury/illness prevention and wellness protection.  Students will be able to:

Interpret relevant fitness/testing procedures to minimize the risk of injury/illness
Facilitate prevention strategies to minimize injury/illness risk

Goal 2:  Athletic training students will be skilled in clinical evaluation and diagnosis of injuries, illnesses, and pathologies.  Students will be able to:

Utilize evidence-based techniques to perform clinical evaluations based on relevant pathology
Differentiate appropriate special/diagnostic tests to develop differential diagnoses of the injury, illness or condition

Goal 3:  Athletic training students will distinguish appropriate immediate and emergency care strategies. Students will be able to:

Demonstrate appropriate immediate and emergency medical care within the scope of athletic training practice

Goal 4:  Athletic training students will design and implement therapeutic interventions. Students will be able to:

Interpret patient’s needs to appraise and administer the appropriate evidence-based therapeutic intervention (i.e., modalities, rehabilitation, medication)

Goal 5:  Athletic training students will support organizational and professional health. Students will be able to: 

Develop policies and procedures in the administration of athletic training and health care facilities
Utilize effective communication strategies and appropriate medical terminology

What is an Athletic Trainer?
Athletic Trainers (ATs) are health care professionals who collaborate with physicians to provide preventative services, emergency care, clinical diagnosis, therapeutic intervention and rehabilitation of injuries and medical conditions. Students who want to become certified athletic trainers must earn a degree from an accredited athletic training curriculum. Accredited programs include formal instruction in areas such as injury/illness prevention, first aid and emergency care, assessment of injury/illness, human anatomy and physiology, therapeutic modalities, and nutrition. Classroom learning is enhanced through clinical education experiences.

Is an athletic trainer the same thing as a personal trainer?
Athletic training is often confused with personal training. There is, however, a large difference in the education, skillset, job duties and patients of an athletic trainer and a personal trainer.

An athletic trainer is an expert at recognizing, treating and preventing musculoskeletal injuries. ATs meet qualifications set by the Board of Certification, Inc., and adhere to the requirements of a state licensing board. ATs practice under the direction of a physician and are members of a health care profession recognized by the American Medical Association.

A personal trainer develops, monitors and changes an individual’s specific exercise program in a fitness or sports setting; some personal trainers also make nutrition recommendations. Personal trainers can earn credentials through a number of agencies and can work as fitness trainers without formal instruction or certification.

Is the Georgia College Athletic Training program accredited?

The Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training received continuing accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) in April 2008. Graduates in Athletic Training are qualified to sit for the National Board of Certification exam.

What are the prerequisite Area F courses for the program?

  • BIOL 2160 Human Anatomy & Physiology I
  • BIOL 2170 Human Anatomy & Physiology II
  • PSYC 2102 The Developing Individual
  • KINS 2323 Nutrition
  • KINS 2331 Medical Terminology
  • KINS 2103 Prevention & Care of Musc. Injuries

Do I have to have all my pre-requisites completed at the time I apply?

All pre-requisites must be completed or in progress during the semester you apply. You must receive a C or better to be considered as an applicant.

When do you begin accepting applications for the program?

Students typically apply for the program during their sophomore year or when finishing pre-requisite classes.

What is the deadline for submitting an application to the program?

Applications are accepted until February 1st of each year. Applications are only accepted one time per year.

How many students are accepted into the program each year?

On average, we accept 22 students each year, but that number is flexible depending on the number of applicants.

When does the program start?

A new cohort begins the program each fall semester. The program takes two years to complete.

What additional expenses might I anticipate to incur (not related to class fees or tuition) while in the program?

Students should expect to incur approximately $500/year in additional costs for the program. These costs include: travel to clinical sites (i.e., gas) copying/printing, apparel/personal items, AT supplies, and personal liability insurance.

Once I apply to the program, when will I get an interview?

You are not guaranteed an interview. Once all application requirements are met, and all application materials are reviewed, you may be given an interview.

If I apply this year and don’t get accepted to the program, can I reapply next year?

Yes, but all application materials must be re-submitted.

When should I start my 40 observation hours?

It is up to you when you start your observation hours. We recommend beginning towards the end of the fall semester before you apply to the program. Prior to ALL observation hours you must complete blood borne Pathogen, FERPA, and HIPPA.  These are completed online through D2L. Once successful completion has been documented, you may begin observation hours.

Can I get my observation hours anywhere I want?

You must complete your observation hours at one of our clinical placements. Any questions about a site should be brought to the program director for approval.

Who should I ask to complete my three professional recommendations?

Your 3 professional recommendations must be completed using the form on the Athletic Training page of the GCSU webpage. We strongly encourage that at least one of your references be completed by someone with whom you completed observation hours.  Your references should be completed by someone who can attest to your character, personality, and your ability to succeed as an athletic training student.

What can I do with an athletic training degree?

Athletic trainers provide physical medicine, rehabilitative and preventative services. Athletic trainers treat a breadth of patients, including but not limited to: professional, college, secondary school and youth athletes, dancers, musicians and military personnel. Athletic trainers can work in a variety of locations including schools, physician clinics, hospitals and manufacturing plants.

Who can I contact if I have other questions?

Dr. Mandy Jarriel- Program Director
(478) 445-2136
336 Health Sciences Building

Ms. Brittney Hardin - Clinical Education Coordinator
(478) 445-8626
336 Health Sciences Building

Degree Requirements

Contact Information

Dr. Mandy Jarriel, Program Director
336 Health Sciences Building
Campus Box 112
Milledgeville, GA 31061 
Phone 478-445-2136
Fax 478-445-4074



School of Health and Human Performance
336 Health Sciences Building  |  Campus Box 112
Milledgeville, GA 31061
Phone: (478) 445-4072
Fax: (478) 445-4074