When Carlos Bautista-Enrique traveled from his home in Spain to Oklahoma to attend The University of Tulsa on a tennis scholarship, he didn’t realize that his undergraduate experiences would lead him to a career in athletic training.
“I worked toward my undergraduate degree in Exercise and Sports Science while I played tennis my first four years in Tulsa. After graduating with my bachelor’s degree, I decided to stay at TU and obtain a Master of Athletic Training because I really enjoy working with athletes,” said Bautista-Enrique. “The program at TU’s Oxley College of Health Sciences is very good, and I received individual attention from the professors.”
Bautista-Enrique enjoyed his clinical rotation with the Tulsa Roughnecks soccer team.
During his time in the graduate program, Bautista-Enrique participated in clinical rotations working at the Tulsa Roughnecks professional soccer team and at two of the area’s largest high schools including the Jenks football team and the Union basketball team.
“My clinical experiences taught me that I can use my athletic training degree in a number of jobs from working with teams at colleges and high schools, to working for physical therapists and those in performance arts.”
Working with TU’s METIman patient simulator was memorable.
In addition to his clinical experiences, Bautista-Enrique trained in TU’s Lawson Family Nursing Simulation Center and Skills Laboratory with METIman® – a high-fidelity patient simulator that presents increasingly difficult health scenarios.
“Our simulated patient allows us to educate the athletic training students on injury and illness-based scenarios, increasing in complexity as they advance through the Master of Athletic Training degree program,” said Rachel Hildebrand, clinical assistant professor and director of TU’s Athletic Training Program. As students proceed through the program, METIman’s injuries become progressively more difficult to identify.
One of Bautista-Enrique’s most memorable experiences in the clinic involved assessing METIman’s condition while a real TU coach was trying to “rush him to return the simulated-patient back onto the field without proper evaluation.” He says that experience was extremely stressful but helpful in seeing how real-life situations might play out.
95% of TU’s athletic training grad students pass the Board of Certification exam on the first try.
After graduating and passing his Board of Certification exam, Bautista-Enrique now works for Tulsa Public Schools as an athletic trainer for the football team at East Central High School and for other schools as assigned. When looking back on his time at TU, he says, “TU is a great place to go to school for a graduate degree in athletic training. They mentor you and work with you on a daily basis so you’re ready to go to work the first day after graduation.”
Read more about TU’s athletic training program here. TU is the only school in Oklahoma to offer the accelerated five-year master’s program. Since graduating, TU students have accepted certified athletic training positions with the Los Angeles Dodgers and Texas Rangers organizations, Disney Wide World of Sports, University of Oklahoma, as well as many area high schools and orthopedic clinics.