Department Chair and Program Director
Dr. Begalle graduated from Canisius College with a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training in 2002. She was selected as an athletic training fellow with the New Hampshire Musculoskeletal Institute, an integrated one-year sports medicine program. Upon completion of the fellowship, Dr. Begalle worked as an athletic trainer for a hospital-based health and wellness facility. Dr. Begalle earned her Master of Science in Athletic Training in 2007 while serving as a Graduate Assistant at Plymouth State University in New Hampshire. As a graduate assistant, she provided primary athletic training services for the Division III men’s and women’s soccer and softball teams. Dr. Begalle became an Assistant Athletic Trainer and Adjunct Instructor at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY. She returned to higher education and completed her Ph.D. in Human Movement Science with a concentration in Biomechanics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2014.
Dr. Begalle came to Daemen College from Illinois State University where she was an Assistant Professor in their CAATE accredited pre- and post-professional Athletic Training Degree Programs. Dr. Begalle has a broad range of teaching experience including courses in Biomechanics, Therapeutic Exercise, Research Design, Evidence-Based Sports Medicine, Injury Evaluation, and Pathology & Pharmacology.
Dr. Begalle’s research interest involves understanding movements that contribute to lower extremity injury and improving those movement patterns to prevent injury and assist in maintaining physical activity through the lifespan.
Phone Number: 716 566-7820
Office Location: AWC 210
Professor Rebecca Romano Besch is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Departments of Health Promotion and Athletic Training. Professor Besch is a Certified Athletic Trainer, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, and a Performance Enhancement Specialist. She earned a Master of Science degree in Athletic Training from California University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Science degree in Athletic Training from Canisius College.
As an Athletic Trainer, Professor Besch has worked with student-athletes in a variety of settings. These experiences have driven her work as an educator. She is excited to help mold future athletic trainers and health & fitness professionals into people who will serve and care for others with knowledge and empathy. Professor Besch also enjoys serving as a community and professional rescuer First Aid and CPR/AED instructor.
Phone Number: 716 839-8367
Office Location: AWC 204
Dr. Matthews graduated from West Virginia University with a Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education and a minor in Athletic Training. Dr. Matthews became a certified Athletic Trainer in 1982 and then earned her Master of Science in Secondary Education while fulfilling the duties as a Graduate Assistant Athletic Trainer at Bradley University in 1983. As a graduate assistant, Dr. Matthews provided athletic training coverage primarily for the Bradley Braves men’s and women’s basketball teams, and secondary coverage for the college’s remaining intercollegiate sport teams and the Springfield Junior Blues hockey team. Dr. Matthews conducted research on chondromalacia patellae during her graduate work. Dr. Matthews continued her education and graduated from the State University of New York at Buffalo with a Bachelor of Science in Physical Therapy in 2000, successfully completed the required examinations in Manual Physiotherapy at the Intermediate Level in 2003, and then completed her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Daemen College in 2007.
Upon graduation from Bradley University, Dr. Matthews worked as the head athletic trainer for East Longmeadow High School for several years then moved to the Buffalo area and began working for AthletiCare’s Sports Outreach Program and provided coverage to high school and college sport teams.
Dr. Matthews brings over 25 years of working in the field of sports medicine and has been an adjunct faculty member of Daemen College since 2006.
Phone Number: 716 839-7207
Office Location: AWC 123
Professor Surace graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training and Physical Education from Canisius College in 1996. In 1999, he graduated with a Masters of Education degree from East Stroudsburg University. As a graduate assistant at East Stroudsburg University, he provided athletic training services for the Division II football team. Professor Surace became the athletic trainer at Niagara Falls High School in Niagara Falls, NY through a hospital system in Lewiston, NY. He has served as the Director of Sports Medicine and Rehab Manager at Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center while developing and managing the sports medicine outreach program and managing the physical therapy, orthopaedic, and occupational therapy clinics.
He has served as an adjunct professor at Daemen College and Niagara County Community College with teaching experience including courses in kinesiology and lower extremity orthopaedic assessment. Professor Surace’s research thesis investigated the “Effect of Selected Tools on Facemask Removal Time and Head Motion.” He has been a member of the Sports Medicine Concepts, Inc. team since 2000 serving as a primary instructor for which he presents the material on “Management of the potentially spine injured athlete” nationally. He has presented this material to groups such as the NFL, NHL, collegiate AT programs, outreach AT programs, and EMS groups. He has also completed research in the area of concussion in conjunction with the UB concussion clinic. He was a co-Author in the study of “Exercise Stress Testing as a Valid Indicator of Concussion Recovery in Adolescents” which was published in the Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine and has been involved in many other concussion related studies.
Phone Number: 716 566-7876
Office Location: Athletic Training Room
Phone Number: 716-839-8220
Office Location: AT 168
Professor Sage graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Physical Education with a concentration in Athletic Training from the State University of New York, College at Brockport in 1994. In 2007, he graduated with a Master of Science degree in Exercise Science and Health Promotion, Injury Prevention and Performance Enhancement Tract from California University of Pennsylvania. Professor Sage maintains several professional certifications including: Certified Strength & Condition Specialist through the National Strength and Conditioning Association and Performance Enhancement Specialist from the National Academy of Sports Medicine.
Professor Sage has been the Head Athletic Trainer at Daemen College since 1995. Prior to his position at Daemen College, Professor Sage was the Manager of the Sports Outreach Program for the Catholic Health System. Professor Sage has provided athletic training services to high schools, colleges, semi-professional teams, and professional teams.
Phone Number: 716 839-8529
Office Location: SH 109A