Passing the Torch: Athletic Training Graduate Marlon Carvajal

Marlon poses in front of a greenhouse in his graduation attire.

After five years, Marlon Carvajal of Weehawken, NJ (Hudson County) is graduating from Rowan’s Athletic Training program. Rowan’s athletic training program includes a bachelor’s in the pre-athletic training program and a professional graduate program resulting in a Master’s of Science in Athletic Training. Marlon tells us about the program, his work at Campus Recreation and more.¬†

Marlon poses in front of the Rowan arch.

“My program was a 2 + 3 grad program. The first two were undergraduate and then the last three were technically graduate, but we called it the professional phase. During the professional phase, I went out to multiple clinical rotations. I went to a couple of high schools and doctor’s offices. I was both here at Rowan and at Stockton University for a semester, and I was just doing athletic training work. I was doing evaluations for injuries, rehabilitation, practice, and game coverages, taping the athletes to get them ready for the game, and just overall improving their health so they can return to their sport,” he explains.

Marlon tells us a bit about the difference between his time as an undergraduate student and in the professional phase.

“For my program at least, I feel like it’s a lot less classroom work, and more hands-on. All my undergrad classes were in person, and they gave us many assignments throughout the semesters. My program was accelerated, and the graduate portion was, I don’t want to say it was laid back because I still did a lot, but it was only my fellowship and my research project. There’s still a lot of work to be done, but definitely less intense because I’m only focusing on two things instead of five different classes.”

The curriculum that Marlon went through is a little different from the curriculum for incoming students.

“Now it’s a 3+2 program, so three years of undergraduate and two years of graduate school, which is the professional phase now. So the classes are set up a little different, and the material is just a little different.”

Marlon poses in front of some greenery.

For high schoolers who think they might be interested in athletic training, Marlon offers some advice.

“If you want to do something before coming into the program, I’d say reach out to your high school athletic trainer just to see if you can shadow them after school or at games. That way, you can see what actually goes on before you come into the profession here.”

Marlon made many friends throughout his time at Rowan, especially working at Campus Recreation.

“I started off as a general employee and then I worked my way up to manager and I have met so many great people throughout the years.”

He recalls a special moment during his time at the Rec.

“The first banquet for the Rec I had attended was before COVID. It was the first year I worked a full school year at the Rec Center, so I got to know many people and I got a promotion that year. Many people were receiving awards, and it was just a great time. I got to see all the seniors back then graduate, so it was nice.”

Marlon is currently working on getting his paperwork done for his license and fielding offers for jobs.

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Story by:
Rachel Rumsby, junior communication studies and public relations double major

Photos by:
Stephanie Batista, junior business management major

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