FACULTY
Chris Kuenze, Ph.D., ATC
Dr. Kuenze is an assistant professor in the Department of Kinesiology and a clinical professor in the Division of Sports Medicine at Michigan State University. He serves as the Director of the Graduate Program in Athletic Training as well as the Director of the Sports Injury Research Laboratory. His primary research interest revolves around the impact of ACL reconstruction on physical activity, response to exercise, and quadriceps neuromuscular function with the goals of reducing ACL re-injury risk and promoting positive long term patient outcomes. In addition, Dr. Kuenze is working to develop low cost evaluation and intervention technologies to assist in the restoration of quadriceps muscle function and the optimization of functional movement patterns following knee joint injury. His recent work has been featured in the Journal of Athletic Training, Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, and Journal of Orthopaedic Research. Contact Dr. Kuenze at kuenzech@msu.edu.
Tracey Covassin, Ph.D., ATC, FNATA
Dr. Covassin is an Associate Professor and licensed athletic trainer at Michigan State University in the Departments of Kinesiology and Intercollegiate Athletics. Her research in sport-related concussion includes sex and age differences in concussion outcomes, neurocognitive impairments, and issues associated with multiple concussions. Dr. Covassin currently directs a multi-site high school and college sport-concussion outreach program in the Mid-Michigan area. Dr. Covassin has over 65 professional publications and 80 professional presentations, and has received funding as a principal investigator from external sources including the National Operating Committee of Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE), BrainScope, National Athletic Trainers Association (NATA) Research and Education Foundation, NFL Charities, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In 2013 she was appointed to the Institute of Medicine (IOM) and National Research Council Sport-Related Concussion in Youth Committee. The committee reviewed current literature on concussions, their causes and the relationship of hits to the head during sport, effectiveness of protective devices and equipment, screening and diagnosis, prevention, management and treatment. The evidence-based report titled “Sport-related Concussions in Youth: Improving the Science, Changing the Culture was released October 2013. Dr. Covassin was invited to the White House for President Obama’s Healthy Kids & Safety Sports Concussion Summit, to speak at Fort Carson for the Defense Center of Excellence of Psychological and Traumatic Brain Injury and expert panel at the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine. Contact Dr. Covassin at covassin@msu.edu.
GRADUATE STUDENTS

Abby Bretzin, M.S., ATC
Abby is a third year Ph.D. student interested in sports-related concussion (SRC). Currently, her focus is on neurocognitive deficits and sex differences following a SRC as well as investigating preventative interventions for both SRC and head impacts below the threshold of a concussion. Her master’s thesis evaluated the relationship of head impact kinematics and strength of various muscle groups in the cervical spine in soccer athletes. Abby is currently a research assistant in the Sports Related Concussion Lab and teaching assistant in the Department of Kinesiology. Contact Abby at bretzina@msu.edu
Jennifer Savage, M.S., ATC
Jennifer is currently a third year Ph.D. student in Kinesiology with a concentration in Athletic Training, studying under Dr. Tracey Covassin. Her interest includes the long-term effects of sports-related concussions in athletes and the self-efficacy of certified athletic trainers in the use of concussion assessment and management. She completed her Master's Degree in Sports Medicine in 2015, at Georgia State University. Her interest examined the effects of the short-foot exercise in athletes with chronic ankle instability. She completed her Bachelor's Degree in Athletic Training in 2013, at Western Carolina University. She serves as a research assistant and teaching assistant in the Department of Kinesiology. Contact her at savage25@msu.edu
Caroline Lisee, M.Ed., ATC
Caroline is a second year Ph.D. student interested in neuromuscular adaptations after traumatic knee injuries. Specifically, she studies different aspects of muscular performance after ACL injury to help identify clinical tools to reduce risk of re-injury and developing osteoarthritis. Her master’s research assessed limb symmetry in healthy subjects as a means for guiding objective return to play criteria following ACL reconstruction. She serves as a research assistant and teaching assistant in the Department of Kinesiology. Contact Caroline at liseecar@msu.edu
Kyle Petit, M.S., ATC
Kyle is a second year Ph.D. student who currently serves as a research and teaching assistant in the Department of Kinesiology. His research interests primarily focus around sport-related concussions and how they affect high school and collegiate athletes. Kyle is particularly interested in assessing population and sport differences along with various components of the evaluation process. His master’s research assessed caffeine’s effect on select concussion evaluation tools. Contact Kyle at petitkyl@msu.edu
Morgan Anderson, M.S.
Morgan is a first year Ph.D. student. Her research interests include the neuropsychological, psychosocial, and physical effects of sport-related concussion (SRC). She completed her Master’s Degree in Kinesiology-Exercise Science at the University of Arkansas in 2017. Her thesis compared before-school and after-school neurocognitive performance and symptoms to determine the optimal time to administer computerized neurocognitive testing. Morgan is currently a research assistant in the Department of Kinesiology. Contact her at ande1997@msu.edu
Tom Birchmeier MS, ATC, CSCS
Tom is a first year Ph.D student in the Department of Kinesiology, where he serves as a teaching and research assistant. Tom received his Master's Degree in Athletic Training from the University of Indiana. His master’s research focused on treating plantar fasciitis with instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization. His current research interests include quadriceps function and return to physical activity following ACL reconstruction. Contact Tom at birchm48@msu.edu