This summer, Shenandoah University Doctor of Physical Therapy/Master of Science in Athletic Training student Janese Malone ’22 interned with the NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs, getting an up-close look at the kind of work she intends to do as a physical therapist (PT) and athletic trainer (AT).
“This internship allowed me to network and motivated me to continue to pursue my dream of working in the NFL as an AT/PT,” Malone said.
Malone applied for the internship through the Professional Football Athletic Trainers Society (PFATS) with 32 teams. Through the competitive process, Malone interviewed with three teams. Kansas City was the first to offer a summer internship. She also received the PFATS and NFL Foundation Ethnic Minority and Female Athletic Training Student scholarships this summer.
During the 8-week internship, which ran from training camp until the team’s last preseason game, Malone was involved with field set up/breakdown, assisted with field coverage, assisted with rehabilitation, and was involved with taping athletes. Malone got to know the professional athletes and saw different equipment and techniques used, as well.
An unexpected discovery from the internship related to the interprofessional networking of the Chiefs’ health care team. “I had opportunities to shadow different doctors (osteopathic, neurogenic, and internalist), chiropractors, and physical therapists. Doctors were readily accessible and quick with care,” Malone said.
Malone said the most fun she had, however, was being involved with game day. I was even on national TV with [Kansas City quarterback] Patrick Mahomes in the background!”
Now, Malone is back at Shenandoah, continuing studies in a program (the first DPT/MSAT program in the nation) that she knew was right for her after her interview, which she said sealed the deal. “I felt very comfortable, knew that I would be supported, receive a top-notch education, and that the program would challenge me every day to become the best AT/PT possible.”