Athletic Training | Capital University, Columbus Ohio


Athletic Training

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  • In this section..

    • Majors: Exercise Science • Exercise Science: Pre-Physical Therapy • Athletic Training • Athletic Training: Pre-Physical Therapy 

      Capital University is currently accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE), 2001 K Street NW, Third Floor North, Washington, DC 20006 USA. The program has chosen to Voluntarily Withdraw its CAATE Accreditation effective June 1, 2023.

      The athletic training program combines coursework with a clinical experience to prepare students to be athletic trainers.


      What you'll learn

      Capital's athletic training program is carefully sequenced to allow students to master knowledge and skills. Small class sizes and one-on-one clinical instruction are important factors in student development. That's why our faculty members take on three pivotal roles in your education — classroom teacher, clinical instructor and advisor. This gives them insight into your educational and professional goals, and your academic ability so they can challenge, support and guide you when you need it.

      Through classroom and clinical experiences, the athletic training major is designed to develop evidenced-based practitioners that incorporate evidence, their clinical skills and the needs of the patient to maximize patient outcomes. 

      As an athletic training major, you'll study human anatomy and physiology, biology, chemistry, personal health, nutrition, care and prevention of athletic injuries, athletic training practices, orthopedic taping and bracing, therapeutic modalities, therapeutic exercise, medical aspects of athletic training, administration of athletic training programs, biomechanics, exercise physiology and principles of strength and conditioning. 

      Explore the program and course descriptions in our online course bulletin.    


      High-Impact Practices: Internships and Clinical Experiences

      Accreditation — Capital's athletic training program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). It's an honor we've earned every year since 1990, and we're one of the few colleges or universities in Central Ohio with CAATE accreditation.

      All students complete a clinical experience under the direct supervision of a certified athletic trainer. The clinical experience includes rotations with intercollegiate sports, sports medicine clinics, high schools, physician’s offices and corporate settings. Students complete clinical proficiencies each semester to advance to the next clinical assignment.

      As early as your first year, you will participate in directed observations that will introduce you to the athletic training profession and Capital’s athletic training curriculum. Students are required to formally apply for the program at the end of their first year. 

      Prerequisites for Program Admission

      You know you want to be an athletic trainer, and that's the major you've chosen. What happens next?  

      Athletic training is a competitive and challenging pre-professional program. But the rewarding career that awaits those who successfully complete the program makes it worth the effort. While you can declare your major as soon as you're accepted to Capital, you still must formally apply and be admitted to the program. Admission to the program takes place at the end of your second semester. Here are some of the things we consider when evaluating candidates:

      • Your performance in certain early courses will help us gauge whether you'll be successful in the athletic training program. So, you'll need to successfully complete 24 semester hours of undergraduate courses, including Biology 151, Chemistry 101, HSPTS 161, HSPTS 289 and HSPTS 260. 
      • You'll need a cumulative grade point average of 2.75 when you apply to the program.
      • You’ll be asked to submit two letters of recommendation with your application to the program.
      • Practical application of what you're learning is critical to athletic training, so you'll need to complete a directed observation program prior to the application deadline. An observation program includes at least five practice observations during the year and one game observation. Make sure you keep a journal detailing the directed observations, because we'll want to see that, too.    

      Other things you'll need to provide before you're admitted to the program: 

      Once you're admitted to the program, your faculty members will evaluate you each semester based on your grade point average, combined scores in your clinical experiences and assignments, and grades in athletic training coursework. 

      Through the remaining three years of the program, you'll continue to gain hands-on clinical experience under the direct supervision of a certified athletic trainer. This will allow you to apply in the field what you're learning in the classroom. Under the direction of the team physician and supervision of certified athletic trainers, you'll also have the opportunity to coordinate the prevention, recognition, treatment and rehabilitation of athletic injuries.  



      Our professors bring out the best in you. We won't lie. They can be tough. But they're also your counselors, your mentors, and your biggest advocates. Meet a few below, or view our department directory.

      See all Faculty in the Directory

    • Benjy Pester, MS, AT

      Assistant Professor

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      Health and Sports Sciences


      • Biography

        Benjy Pester wears many hats at Capital. He is department chair of Health and Sport Sciences, program director of the athletic training program, assistant professor and student advisor. He teaches several courses within the athletic training curriculum, including therapeutic exercise, senior seminar in athletic training, administrative aspects of athletic training and clinical instruction.

        Pester joined the faculty at Capital 15 years ago. Prior to that, he spent two years as a graduate assistant at Ohio State University where he worked with the football and tennis teams while receiving a Master’s degree in Allied Health Education. A 2003 Capital alum, Benjy then returned to Capital where he has been a faculty member for the past fifteen years.

        As department chair, Pester spends much of his time advising students, and his “door is always open." He's proud of the department's hands-on approach to learning, and its ability to match clinical placements with a student's personality and learning style.

      • Degrees Earned

        M.S. Allied Health Education- Ohio State University
        B.A. Athletic Training- Capital University

      • Teaches

        HSPTS 160: First Aid and CPR
        HSPTS 260: Care and Prevention of Athletic Injuries
        HSPTS 261: Sport Injury Care & Management
        HSPTS 270: Motor Learning
        HSPTS 362: Biomechanics
        HSPTS 254: Sophomore AT Clinical I
        HSPTS 255: Sophomore AT Clinical II
        HSPTS 354: Junior AT Clinical I
        HSPTS 355: Junior AT Clinical II
        HSPTS 454: Senior AT Clinical I
        HSPTS 455: Senior AT Clinical II
        HSPTS 495: Pre-PT Internship

    • The Path to a Dream Job: From Columbus to Pittsburgh to Ann Arbor

      Christie-Lee Miller may be from Pittsburgh, but she's a big fan of the city of Columbus. Ohio's capital city is one of the many things that attracted her to Capital University in 2004. 

      "Columbus is pretty awesome, and you're only five minutes from downtown," she said. Other big draws were the ability to study athletic training while participating as a track and field student-athlete and the large number of internship opportunities in the area. Not to be overlooked, the small class sizes were a big plus as well.

      Today, Miller is work at her dream job as an athletic trainer at the University of Michigan, where she has worked with the women's lacrosse, track and field and cross country teams. Prior to accepting the position at a major university, Miller interned with the Columbus Crew and the Columbus Destroyers, and at summer camps at The Ohio State University. After earning her undergraduate degree in athletic training from Capital, she went on to obtain a master's degree in sports medicine and nutrition at the University of Pittsburgh.

      Even though Miller is living her dream at a Big Ten school, don't be fooled. She is a strong advocate for the individual attention and small classes Capital provided. "You get as much or more experience at Capital," she said. "Because it's a smaller school, you have more access and opportunity to work closely with the head athletic trainer."  

      The Best Decision of My Life

      Student-Success-200x300-Athletic-TrainingKelly Leonard will graduate from Capital University this spring, which makes this a time to plan for tomorrow, but also a time to reflect on today. 

      "Coming here was the best decision of my life," Leonard, pictured in yellow at right, said about choosing the athletic training program at Capital. "I would do it all over again. I'm sad that I only have one semester left."

      For the past four years, Leonard has been pursuing a degree in athletic training while also playing on the women's volleyball team. Both are commitments that require a hefty dose of time management. This past summer she took advantage of another opportunity — interning in the Sports Metrics Program at Cincinnati Sports Medicine, where she worked closely with high school athletes. "It gave me a better look at the different groups of people you can serve and the variety of settings you can work in," she said. "I worked with specific sports teams, so I was doing conditioning and working with the high school athletes."

      With graduation just a few months away, Leonard is focused on the next step she need to take to achieve her educational and professional goals: a master's degree. She's currently applying to graduate schools, and hopes to land a graduate assistantship in athletic training while earning her master's. Both will move her father along the path toward her long-term goal of working at a college. As the process unfolds, Leonard can't help but express her gratitude for the many people who helped her through the undergraduate years. "I really enjoyed the professors here at Capital," she says. "Bonnie (Goodwin) is always willing to help any student."

  • Board of Certification Examination Results

    In order to obtain a certification in athletic training, a person must be a graduate of an athletic training program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) and must also pass the Board of Certification (BOC) Examination. Information regarding this process is available at The data for graduates of the Capital University ATP and BOC data are presented in the tables below. 

    Athletic Training Program Data from Capital University 2019 Graduates 2020 Graduates  2021 Graduates  3-Year Aggregate
    Program Graduates 5 6 8 19
    Graduates Attempting BOC Exam 5 7 17
    First Time Pass on BOC Exam 4 2 (40%) 5 (71%) 11 (65%)
    Total Pass on BOC Exam 4 (80%) 2 (40%) 7 (100%) 13 (76%)
     Retention and Graduation Rates for Program 2019 Graduates 2020 Graduates  2021 Graduates 
     Enrolled 7 6 11
     Completed Program 5 6 8
    Employment/Placement Six Months After Graduation 2019 Graduates  2020 Graduates  2021 Graduates 
     Graduate School 4 4 3
     Employed in Field 2 0 5
     Employed (Other) 0 2 0
     BOC 2016-2017 Reporting Year 2017-2018 Reporting Year 2018-2019 Reporting Year
     First Time Candidates 4119 4012 4478
     First Time Passing 3444 3240 3277
     First Time Passing Rate 83.6% 80.8% 73.2%

    Source: Board of Certification PASS Reports