University News

Athletic Training Student Named College of Education and Human Development Valedictorian

Published: April 24, 2019 | Author: Parker Nelson | Category: Commencement

2019-04-rylie-miller-college-valedictorians.jpgThis year’s 2019 Southern Utah University Education and Human Development valedictorian, Rylie Miller, is no stranger to being valedictorian, she was also valedictorian of her high school graduation class.

“Being valedictorian means that I did my absolute best to learn everything I could while at Southern Utah University. It was not my ultimate goal to be valedictorian, it was something that came with my dedication to be the best athletic trainer I can be,” said Miller.

Miller was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada as the oldest of four kids. She is a third generation Thunderbird, following in the footsteps of her dad and grandpa. Miller was a competitive swimmer for eight years before attending college. Once she started her time at SUU, she began putting her swimming skills to use and started competing in triathlons. She has competed in both the Las Vegas and Sand Hollow Triathlons.

In high school, Miller took anatomy and physiology where her teacher noticed she had an aptitude for the subjects and recommended she look into a college major that centered on anatomy and physiology. This eventually led to Miller earning her degree in athletic training.

While at SUU, Miller spent the entire 2019 basketball season as the senior athletic training student for the SUU men’s basketball team.

“Working as the senior athletic training student has caused my love of basketball to grow exponentially and I look forward to watching more college basketball and following the T-birds season next year,” said Miller.

When asked what her favorite aspect to her major was, Miller responded, “Athletic training is unique in that it combines medicine and learning about the human body with sports. I love having the challenge and intensity of being a healthcare professional with the fun and exciting environment of sports and athletes. I chose to study athletic training at SUU because the program is very hands-on. I've had the opportunity to work with many of the SUU sports teams and have had a full immersion education experience working alongside experienced athletic trainers which has prepared me extremely well for a career after graduation.”

As Miller begins a new chapter in life she wanted to leave a piece of advice to those just starting college, “Make a special effort to maintain a healthy work-life balance. Do something each day that makes you happy and/or is relaxing to avoid feeling burned out by the stresses of college.”

After graduation, Miller is excited to attend graduate school at Boise State University and work as a Graduate Assistant Athletic Trainer for the BSU Women’s Swim and Dive Team. Miller is excited to put her undergraduate degree to work while earning a master’s degree.


Tags: Graduation Athletic Training College of Education and Human Development

Contact Information:

Nikki Koontz, executive director of marketing communication
435-586-5400
nikkikoontz@suu.edu