Scifers picks up award for NCATA
The North Carolina Athletic Trainers’ Association and its immediate past president, Western Carolina University faculty member James Scifers, have been honored with a national award that recognizes the NCATA’s efforts to protect middle and high school athletes from head injuries.
Scifers, director of WCU’s School of Health Sciences, traveled to St. Louis recently to accept the Dan Campbell Legislative Award for Outstanding Governmental Affairs Efforts on behalf of the NCATA at the annual meeting of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association. The “Class 1” Campbell award presented to the NCATA is the highest honor that the national athletic training group bestows upon a state athletic training association for legislative activity.
Scifers, professor of athletic training at WCU, was among a group of health care professionals, including athletic trainers representing the NCATA, who helped write the bill that became the Gfeller-Waller Concussion Awareness Act, which was signed into North Carolina law in June 2011. The law established a mandatory concussion awareness education program for public school student-athletes and their parents and coaches, and it also includes other provisions that protect young athletes from the harmful effects of concussions and other head injuries.
Scifers finished his four-year stint as president of the NCATA on July 1. “The experience was extremely rewarding, educational and challenging,” he said. “The NCATA has had its busiest legislative activity in the last 15 years during my presidency. It would have been difficult to predict the flurry of proactive and reactive legislative activity that we have undertaken since 2008.”
The NCATA also was the recipient of two “Class 2” Campbell awards from the national association during Scifers’ presidency.
A year ago, Scifers was recognized for his involvement in the development of the concussion law and his other activities when he received the 2011 Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer Award from the national association.
For more information about WCU’s athletic training program, call 828-227-3509 or visit athletictraining.wcu.edu.