Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Within AT

The Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) is committed to equitable representation for all, including students, faculty, staff and key stakeholders regardless of nationality, ethnicity, race, religion, age, sex, marital status, socioeconomic status, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation or ability. An inclusive environment improves the quality of health care in athletic training community relations and positively affects the health and wellness of our communities.

In 2020, the CAATE leadership released a Statement on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion to explain our values as an organization, and to demonstrate our commitment to celebrate and incorporate DEI concepts and diverse voices into current and future initiatives.

We are proud to act on this statement and advance our DEI initiatives to better support AT educators and the students they serve. As the health care field continues to incorporate culturally competent care, the athletic training profession will lead, with a focus on ensuring diversity and inclusion in AT education programs. Our intent is to move the athletic training profession forward as we accomplish our DEI goals.

Use the below resources to learn more about our DEI initiatives and their impact on AT accredited programs. We will continue to update this page as we advance our DEI goals. 


CAATE Statement on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

The Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) is committed to equitable representation for all, including students, faculty, staff and key stakeholders. The CAATE creates the future of our profession and thus has an immediate impact and responsibility for engraining the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion into the educational process for students. As crucial as it is for us as health care professionals to enforce patient-centered care, it is just as important for the CAATE to enforce this core value into student-centered education.

As an organization, the CAATE is responsible for setting the standards for educating athletic trainers; therefore, the core values of the governing body need to match the needs of the profession. It is imperative the CAATE includes, celebrates and incorporates the concepts and voices of our changing world in our current and future narrative.

As athletic trainers, the population we serve is very diverse, and the clinical population needs to match the patient population. Representation matters. We cannot be an effective or successful community until all voices, especially those often marginalized in our field, are not only included but validated, amplified and celebrated.

The CAATE defines an inclusive environment as one that recognizes the contributions and supports of all, regardless of nationality, ethnicity, race, religion, age, sex, marital status, socioeconomic status, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation or ability. An inclusive environment has been shown to improve the quality of health care in athletic training community relations and positively affect the health and wellness of our communities. CAATE leadership strives to create an inclusive environment in our endeavors so that all patients are welcomed and valued.

It is critical for the CAATE to be committed to equitable representation for all, including students, faculty, staff and key stakeholders to enact educational reform, student-centered education, leadership opportunities and effective multicultural experiences in athletic training.

Additional Resources:

Statements on Racial Injustice


Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Leadership Development Committee

To accomplish our DEI goals, the CAATE developed its Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Leadership Development Committee to build and ensure a culturally proficient environment throughout the organization and our stakeholder programs. This includes volunteer and leadership recruitment as well as DEI training and review of program standards. With the help of this committee, we are making great strides in advancing DEI initiatives within the organization and across our accreditation standards.

The work of the committee has been instrumental in setting objectives and goals for the CAATE. In the 2022-2024 Strategic Plan, we have outlined how the organization will spend the next three years advancing our commitment to equitable representation within all facets of athletic training education.

Learn more about this committee.


Professional AT Programs Accreditation Standards and Residency and Fellowship Standard Updates

With input from program administrators, the CAATE Standards Committee and the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Leadership Development Committee, the commission has approved a new set of DEI & SJ Standards for both the Professional AT Programs Accreditation Standards and Residency and Fellowship AT Programs, reflecting concepts of diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice. The updated standards require educators to add cultural competency to their athletic training curricula. We believe advancing diversity in AT education is a vital step toward fostering professional growth and development to meet the ever-changing needs of the health care field and our patients.

Compliance to the updated standards must be demonstrated within the 2022 annual reports. To help programs understand these changes and comply with the updated standards, the CAATE offers many resources, including instructional webinars, town hall discussions, dedicated sessions at the accreditation conference and documented guidance.

Resources:

The Accreditations Conference will feature multiple sessions that will aid in the understanding and compliance of the updated standards. You might be interested in these sessions. Review the full conference schedule and learn more about these sessions. 

  • Incorporating Social Determinants of Health into Athletic Training Education
  • From the Beginning: Developing a DEI Framework Embedded Throughout the Athletic Training Curriculum (Professional Program)
  • Teaching and Assessing DEI in a Clinical Environment/Teaching and Assessing DEI in a Didactic Environment
  • Cultural Competency in AT Education: Advocating for the Health Needs of All Patients, Communities, and Populations: Panel and Group Discussion (Professional Program)

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Social Justice Webinar Series

The CAATE presents a webinar series focused on diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice.

Starting With Why 

The ability to provide patient-centered care is dependent not only on being compassionate and empathetic but also on the understanding of how a patient’s cultural differences and personal circumstances may affect their health.

Athletic trainers who value diversity are more equipped to advocate for diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice in addition to the health needs of their clients, patients and larger communities. To drive enhancement in patient care across the athletic training profession, overt and intentional focus on diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice must be promoted in athletic training curricula. This webinar will serve as a resource to describe why the inclusion of specific diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice curricular content standards are a necessary and precise component of patient-centered care.

Watch the Recorded Webinar 

Presented by: Toni Torres-McGehee, PhD, SCAT, ATC; Luzita Vela, PhD, LAT, ATC

An Overview of Terminology 

The nomenclature surrounding diversity, equity and inclusion continues to evolve, presenting the potential for communication barriers that challenge the provision of patient-centered care. The use of common language surrounding diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice can help athletic trainers communicate effectively and appropriately communicate with patients, family members, health care professionals and others regarding these concepts.

The expanding nature of the terms used to describe diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice prevents this webinar from being comprehensive in nature. This webinar will serve as a resource for which the concepts of diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice are commonly defined in an effort to improve understanding of the curricular content standards and their implementation in the athletic training curriculum.

Watch the Recorded Webinar 

Presented by: Amanda Tritsch, PhD, LAT, ATC, Associate Professor, University of South Florida


The CAATE’s commitment to DEI, as outlined in the strategic plan, will continue to guide our organization’s educational development and strategic thinking. We are excited by the progress we have made so far, and we look forward to working with the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Leadership Development Committee and other key stakeholders to identify more actions for inclusion to advance the profession.