AT of the Month - Marc Morissette ~ Manitoba Athletic Therapists Association

AT of the Month - Marc Morissette

Marc Morissette - AT of the Month

The MATA would like to recognize Marc Morissette as the AT of the Month for October 2014. Marc is the newest Member to the MATA Board of Directors and has recently helped the Association in the creation of a Concussion Course which the MATA offers to coaches across the province. Marc is a graduate of the U of M Athletic Therapy Program and Certified in 2010. After graduation, Marc continued with school completing a Masters in Science - Kinesiology. He is now working towards a PhD in Applied Health Sciences with Dr. Leiter at the Pan Am Clinic Foundation and is focusing his research on concussions. Click here for Marc's first Author Journal Article here

1. What made you want to study and become an AT?
    When I was working in a research lab after finishing my B.Sc., one of the PhD students mentioned she had previously studied Kinesiology and had applied to work with some hockey teams. After asking her more questions about it, this line of work sounded like something I would enjoy. That led me to look at different teams and what it took to be their 'trainer', and through that process I stumbled across Athletic Therapy. I put some time into researching the University of Manitoba's Athletic Therapy program and decided to take a leap of faith.

2. Why did you choose to pursue the academic side of the profession?
    In 2010 I started a Master of Science in Kinesiology, with my work focusing on exercise physiology at a basic science level. During my time in Dr. Todd Duhamel's lab, I started to realize that while I really enjoyed basic science, my passion was still in Athletic Therapy. Furthermore, I was discovering that our profession was lacking substantial empirical evidence supporting why we do what we do, and how we do it.

3. What is your current research focusing on?
    I still have a ways to go, but I anticipate my research will focus on concussion diagnosis and management. Right now, there are no definitive and objective ways to identify a concussion, outside of sideline assessment tools which aren't strongly supported by research. Current return-to-play/learn/work protocols also lack objective evidence, increasing the need to develop valid and reliable ways to return people to their jobs, school and activities in a safe and effective manner.

4. What are your plans for the future in AT?
    I would eventually like to supervise and manage an independent research program that will continue to examine concussive injuries. I would also like to give back to the profession by teaching at an undergraduate and graduate level to help promote the academic/research side of Athletic Therapy.

5. Advice for students who might want to pursue the academic side of AT.
    Do your leg work, and find a program and advisor that will allow you to do the research you are interested in. Nothing would be worse than dedicating your time to something you don't believe in. Also, don't be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone!

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