Cook helping Sophia Rongione(´26) tape her ankle before soccer practice.
Cook helping Sophia Rongione(´26) tape her ankle before soccer practice.
Sydney Goor

New athletic trainer committed to helping student athletes

Over the summer, Hereford High School recruited athletic trainer Camden Cook to work with student athletes full time during the 2023- 2024 school year. Previously, Hereford has only had part time trainers who attended games and sports practices. Now, Cook begins his day 12pm and stays until practices or games are over.

Cook ´ s job is not only to help treat athletes, he also has many other responsibilities before practices and games.

¨He helps wrap athletes and then fills up our water jugs so we stay hydrated during practice,¨ Jill Jurchak (´27) said.

His job is to also go around the campus and ask if any coaches or PE teachers need help. But his main task is to keep students safe and prevent any potential injuries.

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When dealing with a fatal injury it becomes stressful and discourages people from pursuing an athletic trainer career as someone ´ s life is dependent on them. Cook also explained that athletic trainers do not receive the same type of respect as first responders even though they are there at the scene and are medically trained professionals that are certified to help in the event of an emergency.

Cook is the first person to respond to medical emergencies, especially if they are life threatening. He does CPR and other life saving procedures before paramedics arrive. He also evaluates an injury and advises what the athlete should do.

¨ Being an athletic trainer is because I can help save a life depending on the situation,¨ Cook said.

Seven Maryland districts have schools with full time-trainers, while 12 have part time. Hereford is one of the first BCPS schools to hire a full time trainer.

Athletic trainers are able to help improve a student athlete ´ s performance and treat injuries during a game. One of those athletes is Max VanNote(´24), who recently broke his collarbone during football practice.

¨When I got injured he (Cook) helped get my football pads off and looked at my arm and advised me to go to the hospital,¨ Van Note said. Shortly after, VanNote was taken to the hospital and is now recovering from his injury and was told to not play for at least eight weeks.

BCPS promised to put $345,000 towards finding and hiring trainers for every school by the fall of 2024. Cook will soon not be the only full time trainer, helping students prevent themselves from injury.

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