Drake Athletics has recently added a new athletic trainer to the staff: Andrew Vereen. Vereen grew up in Sioux City, Iowa, where he played four sports and loved being around the culture of team sports. Given this, Vereen knew he wanted to pursue a career that involved team sports. Vereen attended the University of Northern Iowa for both his undergraduate and master’s degrees in athletic training and double majored in sports psychology. Vereen received a job at the University of Kansas, where he worked with their football program as an Assistant Athletic Trainer. Vereen is now working at Drake University and specializes in treatment with women’s soccer and softball.
Q: Did you play a sport in college?
A: I did not play a university sanctioned sport in college, but I was an intramural warrior!
Q: What drew you to Drake?
A: The factor that drew me to Drake was its reputation for having a strong athletics program as well as being a strong academic institution. I knew that the type of athlete that I would be working with, by way of already being committed to Drake, would be driven and want to succeed. I would also say the close-knit feel of the staff was another selling point for me. Looking forward to working with the people you see every day is very important.
Q: Favorite thing to do on and off campus?
A: I haven’t really had a chance to do much on campus yet, but I am looking forward to experiencing that as soon as possible. My favorite things to do outside of campus are to spend time with family and friends. I love to stay active and workout, and I attempt to play a few instruments in my free time. I also consider myself quite the “movie-guy” so I like to relax and watch movies as well.
Q: Why did you choose to work at the collegiate level?
A: Working at the college level is great because you are working with the type of athlete that knows what it takes to get to the next level. They are willing to make sacrifices that most others would not in order to reach their goals. As an athletic trainer, to get the chance to work with and help elite athletes reach their goals is one of the best things about the job, the college level provides that opportunity.
Q: What drew you to athletic training?
A: I knew that whatever profession I chose I wanted to be around people and to help people if I could. The thing that drew me to athletic training the most was sustaining some injuries of my own while playing sports in high school. I was exposed to an athletic trainer for the first time, and was able to build a really strong relationship with that person. This sort of opened the door to me thinking this would be a great way to not only help people, but also to stay involved with sports and competition.
Q: What is your favorite injury to treat?
A: I really enjoy working with post-surgical cases. While obviously, you would like to avoid any surgical cases on your teams, I really enjoy the challenge of starting the rehab process at day one and helping that person progress all the way back to the field/court and to doing what they love to do. It’s a way to impact that person’s life in a very positive way.
Q: If you could work with another sport which would it be and why?
A: Basketball would be the sport I would pick. I have always been a huge basketball fan and I think it would be a blast to work with as well as get to watch basketball on a daily basis.