Ryan Vultaggio ’18 is a part of the Catalyst Intern Program, a program that funds the internships of some of Trinity’s most highly motivated students. In our interview, he shares why he wanted to be a catalyst intern, what meaningful work he has been doing at Boston Children’s Hospital this summer, and what he hopes to do after Trinity.
Hometown: Groton, Massachusetts
Class Year: 2018
Involvement at school: Trinity College Varsity Baseball Team and member of the Psi Upsilon Fraternity
What is your internship?
I am working as a data processor for The Micheli Center for Sports and Injury Prevention at Boston Children’s Hospital. I am specifically working with the 3D-Motion analysis program, where we have pitchers who range in ages from 12 to 25 come and throw balls in front of our cameras. We’re then able to process that data to give us the kinetic and kinematic values necessary for analyzing the throwing motion. With this data, we can evaluate the stresses a pitcher experiences from mechanical break down in their pitching delivery or muscular deficiency impeding their delivery. Once that data is processed, we bring the pitcher back in after about 2 weeks andgo over a full report of their information: this includes a break down of their throwing motion, the stress their body is experiencing, why that stress is bad or good and how they can fix/improve/alter those problems.
What are your responsibilities as an intern?
My jobs as an intern is to assist in the data collection, marking up the patients with our bio-markers, and recording data during the data collection. We only collect data about once or twice a week, so my day-to-day is mostly data processing of the 3D-motion Analysis.
What’s the most rewarding part of your internship?
The best part of my job is getting to work with patients of a variety of ages. Some kids are young and just starting baseball, others are my age or older and have been playing baseball for a number of years. Since I’m a baseball player myself, it’s rewarding to teach kids new things they may have never seen before, or just talking baseball and sharing our experiences. I also find it very rewarding to be given a screen of moving dots and having the ability to connect anatomical body-land marks creating a full 3D-motion capture of a baseball pitcher.
What are your professional goals/career plans?
I hope to get my Masters in Exercise Science after graduation, where I can continue to work with athletes and help them stay on the field and compete at their highest level. The field of preventative medicine is an aspect of medicine that I feel is undervalued and I want to make it something people are more aware of and more willing to do. It would be great to have athletes train and get stronger before they have a knee surgery and hopefully decrease the number of sports related surgeries.
Why did you want to be a catalyst intern? How has this shaped your experience?
I wanted to be a catalyst intern because I created my current position at the Micheli center from scratch, and it did not include getting paid. Trinity’s Catalyst program has allowed me to explore my interest and possible job paths, that I wouldn’t normally be able to entertain.