Becca is passionate about advocating for our profession, and shows this through her deep involvement with our school's Student Governing Council, and represents PT students through this involvement. - DPT student at KUMC
As a DPT student, Becca has proven to be a leader within her school and program. In addition to being involved in her community, she has impacted her school through involvement within KU’s Governing Council. She will be a great asset to the PT field and will lead to make the profession even better! Check out the KPTA SSIG Facebook page to view this Spotlight, and for notifications when additional Spotlights are featured!
“During my freshman year of college, in pursuit of a minor in Leadership Studies at Washburn University, I read a book called Good to Great by Jim Collins. As a typical freshman, I assumed this would be yet another boring, required reading. Unbeknownst to me, a theory from this book would forever guide my life. The “Hedgehog Concept” consists of a Venn diagram with three circles overlapping; the first being “What are you deeply passionate about?”, the second “What can you be the best in the world at?” and the third “What can generate the most revenue?/What drives your economic engine?” The center of the diagram, where all three circles overlap, is the zone we should all strive to attain to be the most successful. I realized then that physical therapy was my true calling for which I was deeply passionate and felt I would be naturally good at. For the past six years I have been working hard to develop my physical therapy skills, in addition to leadership and interprofessional skills, through involvement with student organizations and as an in-home aid to a wonderful person with Multiple Sclerosis.
At Washburn I enjoyed being involved in a wide array of organizations. This passion carried over when I arrived at KUMC. The past two years I have been a senator in the Student Governing Council (SGC) and Interprofessional Committee co-chair. The focus of my time as co-chair was the creation of a Unified Honor Code for all of KUMC. My committee members and I agreed that all health professions, medical and nursing students, should be held to the same ethical expectations. However, there was not a document that embodied this belief. Together we created this Unified Honor Code through collaboration of all student leaders from each school at KUMC. We believe this document displays the interprofessionalism and team work that is a core tenet of our education at KUMC. It also builds a framework that we can continue to follow after graduation to produce patient-centered care, together. My involvement with student government and attendance of KPTA’s Day on the Hill the past two years sparked an interest in advocating for physical therapy on the local and national legislative levels. I hope to be involved with the Legislative Committee of KPTA during this third year of school, and after graduation. In the future, I’d like to have a seat on APTA’s House of Delegates to create national changes that will allow physical therapists to provide the high-quality care the profession is capable of.
I encourage you all to reflect on the “Hedgehog Concept” and its applicability to your future PT careers. Join APTA, and advocate for our profession in your own way. I am eager to see how our generation of physical therapists will propel the profession forward with our focused intensity and passion for what we do. If you have any questions or comments, you may contact me at email@example.com.” – Becca Ferguson
From being placed in unique clinical locations to having impressive involvement in her program, Melanie is finishing her program with a handful of great experiences. She has proven herself as a leader in her program, by being her class president, and outside of the classroom, through all the organizations she is involved with. Check out below why Melanie was nominated as a SPT Spotlight, and be sure to follow our Facebook page for notifications when another Spotlight is featured!
“From the beginning of PT school, I have been involved in a recently developed program at our school called "GoBabyGo." This is a program that Physical Therapy students and Engineering students have teamed up to modify power wheel cars for kids with disabilities. Within this last year, I have been given the role as the PT Liaison to recruit new members into the program. It has been a great opportunity to get involved with hands-on experience with kids with disabilities as well as learning how to partner with engineering students to find ways to adapt the cars based on the needs of the child. Another program that I have been highly involved in throughout PT school, is an Adaptive Swim Class through our local YMCA. This program is for kids with disabilities, 18 and under, to learn basic swim skills or receive aquatic therapy. We have worked with kids with a wide variety of diagnosis such as Cerebral Palsy, Spina bifida, autism, down syndrome and athetoid CP. Both of these programs have made my love for the pediatric population grow immensely and have allowed me to get out of the classroom and gain hands on experience. I highly suggest anyone who has the opportunity to volunteer for programs like these, to take a break from studying and gain some hands on experience!
Being a native of Vancouver, BC Canada, the mountains and ocean hold a special place in my heart, which is not something that Kansas has to offer. I have had the opportunity to travel a little bit throughout my clinicals. My first 8 week summer rotation, I went to a small town just outside of Salt Lake City, UT. This summer, I completed my 10 week rotation in a small town in northern New Mexico called Farmington, NM. My fall 10 week clinical will be in a small town just outside of Denver, CO. This summer while in New Mexico, I have been given the opportunity to continue my passion of fitness and softball to help coach private softball lessons, run fitness training classes and private sessions, as well as help run a softball/baseball program for kids with special needs.
Although PT school alone is a very stressful time, I have found that taking time away from your books helps the mind not burn out. By volunteering with these programs, helping coach softball, travel, and do CrossFit daily, I have had a fantastic last few years. My advice for PT students is to step away from the classroom, get out and volunteer, do whatever you can to get hands on experience, and most importantly continue to do the things you love.” -Melanie Rowson, SPT
I believe Jordan deserves to be featured in the Spotlight to show that PT students can do so much to help people; not just in our own family or community but around the world too! Jordan is an amazing young woman with an amazing story that deserves to be shared! - DPT Student @ Univ. of Saint Mary
Jordan is proving herself as a leader, giver, and an impact to the community. She has impressive experience with traveling to Haiti to volunteer her time at an orphanage where she helps treat young children with disabilities! This year Jordan has put together a group of classmates to join her on a trip to Haiti. Check out below why Jordan was nominated as a SPT Spotlight, and be sure to follow our Facebook page for notifications when another Spotlight is featured!
“After graduating with my Bachelors, I planned to start the DPT program immediately, however, like many of us, I was not accepted that first year after undergrad. So, I did what most hopeful PT students would do and sought to gain more experience in the field. While I wasn’t necessarily looking for the opportunity, I stumbled upon an orphanage in Haiti that was looking for summer interns. For two months I worked with thirty-eight children, both special needs and able-bodied, at Notre Maison/St. Joe’s Orphanage in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti. I assisted with therapy, helped the nannies with daily care, planned and implemented summer activities, as well as took children to doctor’s appointments and orthotic fittings.
Taking that leap of faith and traveling to Haiti has been life changing. In fact, it’s hard to put into words the impact the country and children have had on me. Haiti is a place like no other, filled with a rich culture and hope. The people are filled with a zest for life and will do anything to lend a helping hand. I have seen pure joy on a child’s face when he stands for the first time or gets her turn to ride the one bike in the orphanage. I have learned how stepping away from what is familiar to me for a short moment can change another person for a life-time.
Since returning home, I have been serving on the orphanage’s advisory board, where I co-manage their website, social media, and quarterly newsletter. The children and country of Haiti have had such an impact on me that I plan to travel and assist the children for the rest of my life. As PT’s, we are given a skillset that can help so many. Sometimes the biggest difference can be made with one little step outside our comfort zone.
If you are interested in the orphanage or interning, please check our website at https://gertrudesorphanage.weebly.com or feel free to email me at Jordan.firstname.lastname@example.org I’d love to chat with you!”
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