ATHLETIC TRAINING MONTH: Robeson Co. AD Jeff Fipps talks about the value of LAT's in his community

The month of March is National Athletic Training Month as promoted by the National Athletic Trainers' Association to spread awareness about the important work of athletic trainers. During the month of March, we'll spotlight Licensed Athletic Trainers across the state, asking them why they participate in education-based athletics as a trainer. We will also talk to Athletic Directors from around the state to describe the impact that having Licensed Athletic Trainers in their schools has had on their students and families.

Our next feature is a question and answer with Robeson County Athletic Director Jeff Fipps.

How does having a LAT increase safety and minimize risk of your student-athletes?

Fipps: Our LATs are the eyes and ears for doctors from our local hospital. Due to our LATs having direct access to hospital resources that allows for our student athletes to get the most appropriate care under their supervision. 

How are parents of the student-athletes benefited by having a LAT managing their child’s health care?

Fipps: With our county being on the lower end of the socio-economical totem pole of the state, our parents are grateful that we have LATs in place not only to take care of their children physically but also there mentally and emotionally.

To what extent is the student-athlete’s academic success impacted by having a LAT managing their health care? 

Fipps: Three out of six of our schools in Robeson county have student athletic training programs. Students that go through summer camp are able to be a part of that school’s program where they learn the basic skills of first aid, taping, and emergency preparedness. These programs can be used to help a student jump start a career in sports medicine, athletic training, or physical therapy.

In what ways does knowing that a LAT is managing the health care of student-athletes you are responsible for allow you to rest better at night?

Fipps: A peace of mind is golden. So knowing that our student athletic population have highly qualified healthcare professionals taking care of them is great for our schools and community.