WSSU Participates in $30 Million NCAA-DOD Concussion Study
Winston-Salem State University is among nine new schools and the only Historically Black College or University, (HBCU) to participate to the largest-ever study of concussion in sport, it was announced recently at the World Congress on Brain Injury meeting in Hague, Netherlands.
The $30 million NCAA-U.S. Department of Defense Concussion Assessment (DOD), Research and Education Consortium study enters its third year this summer and now includes 30 institutions across the country. More than 170 schools have inquired about taking part in the study. WSSU as well as the other new schools will begin baseline screening for all their student-athletes this summer.
“It's not often that opportunities like these are captured at the NCAA Division II level. So in fact, this is not only a win for Winston-Salem State University, but also for the CIAA and HBCUs around the country,” said Tonia Walker, WSSU director of athletics.
“This type of engagement simply strengthens our existing relationship with Wake Forest Baptist Hospital and forges additional partnership opportunities between WSSU and Wake Forest University Athletics. I'm ecstatic that we were selected because this is pretty significant in the grand scheme of organized sports with the recent studies around concussions and their long-term affect on student-athletes' health and well being. The study also ties directly into the WSSU's strategic plan as it embraces collaboration and demonstrates the innovation that we are seeing throughout the campus."
All student-athletes at each of the participating institutions receive a comprehensive preseason evaluation for concussion and will be monitored in the event of an injury. Data collected at each school are evaluated by a team of researchers led by Steven Broglio, director of the University of Michigan’s NeuroTrauma Research Laboratory; Michael McCrea, director of brain injury research at the Medical College of Wisconsin; and Tom McAllister, chair of the Indiana University School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry.
The researchers have collected more than 25 million data points from 16,000 student-athletes at the 21 institutions already participating. After adding the nine new testing sites, researchers estimate that more than 25,000 student-athletes will take part over the course of the three-year study.
The NCAA and DOD have dedicated $30 million to the concussion study and an initiative to spur culture change regarding concussion. Participating schools receive a portion of that funding to cover the cost of carrying out the research.