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Chargers Welcome Two Full-Time Athletic Trainers, Nicolette Marinello and Rachael Kirkpatrick

Chargers Welcome Two Full-Time Athletic Trainers, Nicolette Marinello and Rachael Kirkpatrick

CYPRESS, CA- Cypress Athletics is excited to announce the hiring of two full-time Athletic Trainers, Nicolette Marinello and Rachael Kirkpatrick. The appointments come following a comprehensive national search after the retirement of the longtime Athletic Trainer, Scott Tucker. 

"We have a strong tradition of providing high-level care for student-athletes to ensure that they reach peak physical and mental performance at Cypress College. I am confident that adding both Rachael and Nicolette, who bring a wealth of knowledge and expereince to our Athletic Training Clinic, will help us continue to build on that tradtion here," said Wes McCurtis, Cypress Athletic Director. "Adding the second full-time Athletic Training position shows the committment we have made as a college and as a department to serving the needs of our student-athlete population," he added.

Nicolette is set to return to the Chargers for the 2021-22 season in a full-time role after spending three seasons as a part-time Athletic Trainer at Cypress, while also working as a part-time ATC for El Camino College, Chapman University, and the Los Angeles Galaxy.  Nicolette received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Athletic Training from Chapman University (2014) followed by her Master of Science Degree in Athletic Training from Chapman University (2019). 

Rachael joins Charger Athletics after spending the last four seasons as Head Athletic Trainer for the Barstow College Vikings. Along with her role as Head Athletic Trainer, covering Barstow's six intercollegiate athletic programs, she added Interim Athletic Director to her role from 2018-2020. Over the past year she's added the role of Eligibility Specialist and Administrative Assistant to her Athletic Training duties for the Vikings. Rachael earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Athletic Training from Chapman University (2014) followed by her Doctorate Degree in Athletic Training from Indiana State University (2017). 

What are you most excited about in your new role at Cypress College?
Nicolette: I am most excited about running the athletic training clinic and building a Division 1 like program at the community college level. I take a collaborative approach to sports medicine by incorporating a wider health care team including a sports psychologist, physical therapist, and sports medicine specialized physicians. I am most excited about providing the best care to all student athletes and utilizing all sources possible.
What is the most intimidating part about becoming a first full-time Athletic Trainer?
Nicolette: The most intimidating part about being the full-time AT at Cypress is probably all of the administrative duties that I am about to take on with COVID. There is a lot of administrative tasks with being a full-time Athletic Trainer, but when you include COVID in the mix, it certainly adds to the load. 
What is the main tool you will replicate from Tucker when handing athletes at Cypress?
Nicolette: Scott had a very unique way of connecting with athletes on a personal and professional level. Many times athletes would discuss details about their personal life and he would use those details to but a connection to athletes to gain trust and also help advance in their physical rehabilitation. I plan to use what I learned from Scott about building a rapport with each athlete to help build this comprehensive wellness approach — encompassing and providing care for all pillars of health.
What are you most excited for in your new adventure at Cypress College?
Rachael: I'm really looking forward to working with our awesome staff. I've honestly heard great things and can't wait to join the Charger family! I am also excited to be a leader on campus and continue the tradition of excellence in Athletic Training for Cypress College. Scott Tucker has always been such a great leader within the profession and I am thankful for the opportunity to continue that legacy.
What experience in your career has prepared you the most for your new position?
Rachael: My education and clinical experiences have been great contributors to preparing me for this position. For the last 5 years I've been the Head Athletic Trainer at Barstow College. Prior to that, I earned both my bachelor's and doctoral degrees in Athletic Training from Chapman University and Indiana State University. I've learned leadership, advocacy, and clinical expertise from my incredible mentors, but most importantly, they taught me to be a life-long-learner. Healthcare and the needs of our patients are ever evolving and as clinicians, so should we.
What is something that the Cypress Athletes and Staff should know about you?
Rachael: I have been so fortunate to truly understand the phrase "do what you love and you'll never work a day in your life". I am passionate about Athletic Training and the students I serve. As an Athletic Trainer, I get the unique opportunity to not only be a healthcare provider but also an advocate for our student-athletes, whether it be on the court/field, in the classroom, or in life. 
I also have 2 dogs, Henry and Harley. (AKA future Charger mascots and #1 fans!)
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