Returning back to high school is something most people would never dream of. However, for athletic trainer Aerin Henderson, after graduating in 2008, returning to Leander feels like being home again.
“[When] I heard there was a position opening I decided to shoot my shot and see how it would go,” Henderson said. “This is my first year, and it’s been great so far. I was a student trainer when I was in school here and I really enjoyed it.”
Before returning to Leander, Henderson graduated from Angelo State University earning her Bachelor of Science and Athletic Training, and later worked as an athletic trainer at La Feria high school for four years.
“Before I got into the sports medicine program in highschool I wanted to be an orthopedic doctor,” Henderson said. “But I love doing athletic training so much, so I decided that’s [what] I wanted to be.”
Henderson didn’t start school at Angelo State. When the training program at her previous school had folded, she relocated there.
“A lot of people tend to give up and move on,” Henderson said. “[However], I knew that athletic training was something I wanted to do and so I transferred and I had to start the program all over again.”
As an athletic trainer, Henderson hopes to follow in the footsteps of coaches and teachers who had an influence on her life as well as make a big impact on not only the students but on the athletic program as well.
“I feel honored to be back and working alongside such great people like them,” Henderson said. “Mrs. Allen and Coach Lawrenson were great athletic trainers, and I hope to continue that greatness and even take it a step further to just be there for the athletes.”
In the end, Henderson looks to use her opportunity as an athletic trainer to share her love of sports and medicine with the students, and to give back to them the experience that she had as both an athlete and a student trainer back in highschool.
“That moment that you have [on the field], it’s a very short moment where you can build a relationship and build [a student’s] trust in you to help them,” Henderson said. “At the end of the day they’re going to be coming back to you for rehab, and just being right there with the kids amongst their triumphs even when they’re defeated feels like an opportunity to get to know a kid. It’s great to be there and be their support system. I honestly love it.”