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The Vail-Summit Orthopaedics Athletic Training Fellowship program requires ATs to become NBCOT-certified (OTC certification) per surgical facility credentialing regulations. Preference will be given to ATs who already have this certification at the time of application for acceptance into the program. If the AT is not previously credentialed, our recommendation is to submit your application materials for the NBCOT exam once you are accepted into the fellowship. Accepted fellows are informed of their acceptance into the program in April. This allows for enough time to register for the recommended June test date. If you register for the August test date, your ability to start the OR credentialing will be delayed. A test date after August could compromise your position within the fellowship.

Certified athletic trainers who have been working in orthopaedics under the supervision of an orthopaedic doctor are eligible to sit for the NBCOT exam with a doctor’s signature on the test application. For more information on the NBCOT exam and/or applying to take the exam, please go to

Fellows must obtain certification from the NBCOT or be eligible to sit for the June exam during the year of application.

NBCOT Test Dates

February Examination:  Apply by January 5, 12:00 Noon EST
June Examination:  Apply by April 15, 12:00 Noon EST
August Examination:  Apply by June 30, 12:00 Noon EST
November Examination:  Apply by September 5, 12:00 Noon EST

If unable to successfully pass the June test, the AT fellow will begin the fellowship without access to the OR section of their rotation.

If the AT fellow is unable to successfully pass the exam for the second time, the second rotation for the AT fellow will also be without access to the OR section.

If, by the third attempt, the AT fellow does not successfully pass the NBCOT exam, it is unlikely that they will be invited to complete the Vail-Summit Orthopaedics Athletic Training Fellowship program, as they will be unable to meet all educational goals set for the program. If an AT fellow is unable to complete the program, human resources will be contacted to initiate and assist with termination of this position.

VSO staff and current athletic trainers will provide support to ensure that fellows successfully become NBCOT-certified and complete each educational rotation.