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Tamaqua native works as trainer at Widener

  • Rachel Connely, a 2008 graduate of Marian Catholic High School and native of Tamaqua, is assistant athletic trainer at Widener University. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO
    Rachel Connely, a 2008 graduate of Marian Catholic High School and native of Tamaqua, is assistant athletic trainer at Widener University. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO
Published March 26. 2016 09:00AM

A Tamaqua native continues to make the grade as assistant athletic trainer at Widener University.

Rachel Connely, a 2008 graduate of Marian Catholic High School, assumed her duties at the Chester-based college in January.

"It's going really well," Connely said. "Everyone has been great to work with and have been very welcoming to me."

Connely said she plans to do her best to ensure the athletes receive the best care possible.

"I want to continue to bring the highest quality of care to my athletes," she said. "I'm very excited about teaching them, and helping them grow in our profession and develop."

Connely most recently worked in the same role at Neumann University, where she was directly responsible for overseeing the women's volleyball, women's basketball, and men's lacrosse programs, and also maintained a working relationship with NovaCare physical therapists and Rothman Institute physicians.

Also, Connely implemented a strength and conditioning program for high school and college athletes, and also oversaw students in clinical proficiencies and professionals skills as a preceptor.

Before that, Connely worked in several roles as a certified athletic trainer with Aspire Sports Medicine, where she was the head athletic trainer at Octorara High School in Chester County, and also provided medical coverage for Montgomery County Community College and the St. Hubert Catholic High School for Girls.

Additionally, Connely spent time as a graduate assistant athletic trainer, and assistant women's basketball coach at Bloomsburg University while she pursued a master's degree at the institution.

She most notably worked with the football program for two seasons, and also assisted with coverage of varsity and junior varsity practices and competitions at nearby Lewisburg Area High School.

Further, Connely also helped the women's basketball coaching staff at Bloomsburg with post-player development, while she also planned and implemented strength and conditioning sessions for the student-athletes.

At the collegiate level, Connely earned four letters as a member of the women's basketball team at James Madison, and was the recipient of the program's most spirited and unselfish player award every season.

During that time, the Dukes registered four winning campaigns, won two Colonial Athletic Association championships, advanced to two NCAA tournaments, and made it as far as the WNIT championship game while she was a member of the squad.

Connely, who was also named a basketball state and regional player of the year by several organizations on the scholastic level at Marian Catholic, received her bachelor's degree in kinesiology and exercise science from James Madison in 2012, and a master's in clinical athletic training from Bloomsburg in 2013.

A member of the National Athletic Trainer's Association and Pennsylvania Athletic Trainer's Society, Connely enjoys staying active, reading books and cooking in her free time.

She lives in Conshohocken.

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