By: Lindsay Borges
Mr. Weston Pondolfino, the American Sign Language teacher at AHS, doubles as the athletic trainer. His goofy, positive attitude makes it easy for students to feel comfortable with him, especially when it comes to their injuries.
Pondolfino attended Endicott College to earn his bachelor’s degree in Science and Athletic Training. He took many science courses including chemistry, kinesiology, and anatomy & physiology. He has worked at AHS as the athletic trainer for four years, and thoroughly enjoys his job and the students he works with every day.
Although Pondolfino is a natural at what he does, he did not always know that he wanted to go down this career path. “When I was in high school I didn’t know if we had athletic trainers. As a senior, I had no idea what I wanted to do. All I knew was I liked anatomy, I was good at it, and I loved sports. So I found a job that could include both of them,” said Pondolfino.
The hours of an athletic trainer can be long, ranging from 6:30 a.m. to as late as 7 p.m.,” Pondolfino said, “The hours aren’t as inconvenient as rarely being able see what’s wrong with an athlete; you’re only able to trust what they’re telling you.” This can be frustrating because an athlete could further injure themselves by lying about how serious their injury is.
To Pondolfino, this leads to the hardest part of the job. “Telling an athlete that they have to sit out for the whole season, or even a couple games is always hard. Because they want to be out on the field with their team, they want to be involved and sometimes they just can’t be.”
Pondolfino witnesses many injuries, ranging from abrasions to tears and sprains. He says the most interesting injuries he’s had to tend to have been a dislocated elbow and a popped out patella.
As much as Pondolfino loves his patients, his patients love him. Amy Eklind (11), who plays basketball and lacrosse, said, “He puts a lot of his time and effort into treating injuries and helping athletes get back on track after they’ve been out. As an athlete myself, I appreciate that.”
“By always providing his assistance, he’s become an important part of the athletics department and of the school itself,” said Olivia Letourneau (11), who plays soccer and basketball.
Not only is Pondolfino respected by athletes as their trainer, he is valued by the students for his easygoing and likeable personality. “I think he’s great because he’s always enthusiastic and in a good mood,” said Erin Grimes (11), who plays soccer.
Although athletic training can be very tedious and tiring, Pondolfino loves his job and insists it’s the perfect job for