As the Lead Student Strength Coach for the Washington State University Men’s Baseball and Women’s Soccer teams, Cameron Dwyer’s hit a home run. As a baseball-loving kid whose summers were defined by games, tournaments, and traveling, the Spokane-native once dreamt of becoming a professional baseball player. At the same time, Cameron knew his other aspiration of making a positive impact on others meant he should go to college.
Cameron chose WSU because he’d grown up around Coug fans and always heard the University had a positive culture. “It’s close enough to home,” he said, “that I get to see my family. They come to Pullman for events. And, WSU has a strong kinesiology program, which provides me countless opportunities.”
Cameron receives numerous scholarships, including the Cline W. Frasier and Gretchen Gnauck Frasier Endowed Scholarship, designated for students who are highly motivated to excel in college. He also received the WSU Presidential Leadership Award, Faculty Honor for Outstanding Critical Thinking, and Faculty Award for Outstanding Presentation at the Bruya-Wood Undergraduate Research conference. Go, Cameron!
“These scholarships are incredibly valuable to me,” Cameron said, “because other people saw the work I was doing and believed it was worth their investment. Private support has had a profound impact on me. The generosity of donors motivates me to work hard to represent them and the WSU community in the best way possible.”
Through hands-on experience in the Bohler Weight Room, a Division I collegiate facility, Cameron has developed strong leadership skills and learned to adapt to a fast-paced professional environment. This included waking at 4:30 a.m. and preparing “Bohler” before the morning teams arrived.
Under the mentorship of Assistant Director of Strength and Conditioning, and full-time Strength Coach for baseball and soccer, Coach Adam Thackery, Cameron led team warm-up and cool-down sessions, and coached proper form and technique during team lifts. “Coach Adam was the most significant contributor to, and guiding influence on, my time in the Bohler weight room,” Cameron said. “And for that, I am extremely grateful.”
By applying his effort and focus to growing professionally, Cameron said he’s been more successful at WSU and found a greater purpose. His most fulfilling experience so far has been working as a student strength coach in Bohler. “During my five-plus semesters and over 900 hours of coaching,” he said, “I’ve met and worked with elite athletes and extremely talented strength and conditioning professionals.”
Cameron also worked with the late David Lang, noted coach who passed away in February 2018. “Coach Lang always pushed me to be active in life and to pursue my dreams,” he said. “He shared stories and wisdom that motivated me to look for opportunities to grow professionally and personally.” Cameron said that it’s not enough simply to be present; he practices Coach Lang’s email signature: “Be a force, not a reaction.”
After his experiences in the WSU Sports Science program, Cameron changed his career goal to chiropractic medicine. His kinesiology classes combined with his work as a strength and conditioning coach helped him decide to become a health care professional who incorporates exercise with chiropractic wellness to help improve the lives and health of people in the community.
WSU faculty members have had a positive impact on Cameron’s educational experience, helping him take the information he learned in class and apply it in a practical setting. He especially appreciates Dr. Phillip Morgan’s energy and teaching methods in human anatomy. “Dr. Morgan made a challenging class fun and entertaining,” he said. “The class motivated me to become a teaching assistant in anatomy.” Cameron guides students through their studies in anatomical structure and function, and prepares them for future health care careers.
In Professor Kim Holmstrom’s capstone class, she provides instruction on how to work with and help individuals with special considerations (i.e., pregnant women, or those with cerebral palsy, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, and more) to exercise and stay healthy. “That class was very fulfilling,” Cameron said, “and it applies directly to my future goals.”
After graduating from WSU, Cameron will complete two internships in Pullman while completing 570 practicum hours at Carnahan Chiropractic and personal training at Snap Fitness. He will also teach courses for WSU’s Physical Education Activity department. Then he plans to attend a chiropractic college to pursue a Doctor of Chiropractic Medicine degree.