Athletes pass through the doors of the athletic training rooms in the Castleton University athletic complex seemingly from sun up to sunset. A tight group of athletic trainers work determinedly to prepare student-athletes for their upcoming games, practices or workouts.
Despite the concentration that fills the room, it is impossible to ignore the absence of a certain someone.
Hannah Goeggelman, a former athletic trainer, moved on from the school by accepting a position at St. John Fisher College, near her hometown in Fairport, New York.
“I was really upset and sad, but also really happy for her,” senior hockey player and athletic training major Lisa Kilroy said. “I know that this was a great opportunity for her and she wanted to move closer to home so I completely understand why she left.”
But Goeggelman’s departure has not only left student-athletes missing a friend, it has placed a bigger workload on the shoulders of the athletic training staff.
“With her leaving, we all have to chip in and pick up the slack,” fellow trainer Ed Wozniakewicz said.
“As a staff, we have had to do cross coverage and it makes us focus more on quality care and not forgetting anyone,” athletic trainer Ellie Goldense added.
Department Director Steve Austin agrees with Goldense and Wozniakewicz and said the void is being felt, but they are making it work.
“Being shorthanded certainly causes more work for the rest of the staff because we are providing coverage for the teams that she was covering,” he said.
Austin continued to say he “lost track” of the times he covered women’s ice hockey, a team Goeggelman was responsible for.
“I have taken care of over 20 of her athletes since she has left,” Goldense added.
Goldense says the loss of Goeggelman has also resulted in her being the lone female on the staff, which proposes some issues.
“While male co-workers are fully capable handling female issues, females would rather talk to other women,” Goldense said.
While the staff scrambles to make up the extra work, Kilroy is impressed with the staff.
“I think that the AT staff does a great job communicating and making sure that whoever is covering knows what is going on with the team,” Kilroy said. “I think that although it is easier and makes more sense for each team to have their own AT, it is perfectly fine to have different ATCs at each practice/game.”
The vacant position is being advertised seeking a replacement, however, Austin stated the search has been temporarily delayed “until either March or April.”