Illinois Wesleyan Task Force Provides Second Report

August 3, 2006 

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - The Illinois Wesleyan University Task Force on the Health and Welfare of Student-Athletes has issued its second report outlining the initiatives being undertaken by the University's athletic department.

The task force was created to review, on an ongoing basis, practices, policies and procedures to enhance the health and safety of student-athletes.

The report, presented to IWU President Richard F. Wilson in July, is based on thorough review of the current best practices in athletic programs at every level of NCAA competition. Research from the National Athletic Trainers Association (NATA) and consultation with IWU coaches and trainers also figured prominently in these recommendations.

"I am very pleased with the work of the task force and endorse the recommendations in that group's second report," said Wilson, who formed the task force last September following the death of IWU student-athlete Doug Schmied. "As I stated when the task force was created, it remains of paramount importance that we make sure that we as an institution are doing everything possible to protect student-athletes while they are training, practicing, and competing."

Among the initiatives to be implemented based on the second report are:

1.  To actively promote and enhance awareness of the signs and symptoms of heat-related illnesses and appropriate responses to them, as well as proper nutrition, fluid replacement, and the importance of getting enough sleep/rest.

2.  Develop and initiate a formal protocol for monitoring the weight of student-athletes and a response for when significant weight loss occurs.

3. Because maintaining hydration (as indicated by baseline body weight) is an important key to preventing heat illness, we will put into place an enhanced hydration protocol.

4.  Implement a mandatory three-hour break between practice sessions during preseason double-session practices for all sports.

5.  Notify all constituencies that the NATA heat index guidelines will be used to determine when practice sessions need to be modified or cancelled. Athletic training personnel will enforce these guidelines.

6.  Make modifications to the Shirk Center to enhance the health and safety of the student athletes, including improving the air conditioning system in order to enhance the cooling of the performance arena and enhancing the lighting in the activity center for baseball and softball practice.

The group's first report, presented last December, included such recommendations as increasing the number of athletic trainers, affirming in writing the head trainer's existing authority to modify or cancel practice sessions, and revising the student-athlete preseason screening form.

In addressing the athletic training staff issue, Illinois Wesleyan has hired Emily Enemark to serve as assistant athletic trainer (biography below). This full-time appointment and two other part-time appointments will double the size of the athletic training staff for the coming fall seasons.

The task force is coordinated by Roger Schnaitter, associate provost, and Jeff Frick, registrar and faculty representative to the NCAA. Other members are Dennie Bridges, director of athletics; Kathy Cavins, vice president for student affairs and dean of students; and Kim Nelson-Brown, associate athletic director.

Enemark Hired as IWU Assistant Athletic Trainer

Emily Enemark has been hired as assistant athletic trainer at Illinois Wesleyan University, IWU athletic director Dennie Bridges announced today.

Enemark earned a master's degree in 2005 at Ohio University and received her bachelor's degree from Northern Illinois University in 2003.

Since August 2005, she has been a certified athletic trainer at Division I Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, where she handled all aspects of healthcare for women's soccer, softball, women's tennis and men's and women's swimming and diving teams.

Enemark was a graduate assistant athletic trainer at Ohio University for a year (2004-05), working primarily with the Bobcats' football and women's lacrosse teams, and was a certified athletic trainer for AthletiCo Physical Therapy and Sports Medicine in St. Charles, Ill., from May 2003 to August 2004. In addition to working a number of summer soccer and lacrosse camps, Enemark also worked as a personal trainer at the NIU Office of Campus Recreation and the DeKalb, Ill., Oak Crest Retirement Center.

She is certified by the National Athletic Trainers Association, is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and, as a certified athletic trainer (ATC), Enemark has have fulfilled the requirements established by the National Athletic Trainers' Association Board of Certification, Inc. (NATABOC).

CONTACT: Stew Salowitz, 309-556-3206