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USciences’ DPT Clinical Experience Helps Alumnus Discover his Specialty
When Anthony Martin DPT’19, began applying to physical therapy programs, he focused on a selection of schools in Philadelphia and New York City. Originally from the west coast, he and his wife were hoping to experience life in the northeast. University of the Sciences stood out from the rest because of its intimate campus and the unique curriculum of the doctorate program.
“What stood out about USciences was the small university life that makes everyone socially involved and the set-up of the DPT curriculum,” Martin explains.
In addition to the curriculum, Martin valued the support he received from his professors at USciences and the program’s emphasis on stress management and socialization. This factor made him really appreciate the investment he had made in USciences.
“My experience at USciences was worth every penny,” Martin said. “The school provided many opportunities for stress relief and fun. The professors in my program made every effort to make our lives easier, despite the rigorosity of the program. That is what I will remember most.”
USciences’ DPT program allows students to experience different physical therapy specialties in a clinical setting. For Martin, this was where he discovered an interest in the McKenzie Method® of Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy® (MDT).
“I was more involved in orthopedics and had the opportunity to attend the first section of an [MDT] certification course, which will gear me towards becoming MDT certified,” explains Martin. “I also strongly believe that I have a well-rounded understanding of neuromuscular and cardiopulmonary systems to prepare me for wherever life takes me. Ultimately, having a DPT from USciences gives me an edge because we are proven everywhere.”
Currently, Martin works as a physical therapist at Alaska Native Medical Center, a nonprofit that offers medical services to Alaska Native and American Indian people living in the state of Alaska. The circumstances of his patients requires him to be mindful during his examination, as many of his patients live in villages with minimal to no running water and gravel or boardwalks instead of paved roads. His firsthand clinical experience at USciences helped him to adapt quickly to these unique circumstances and excel in his position.
“I gained a lot of hands on [clinical] experience through [USciences’] pro bono service,” explains Martin. “The courses, with their associated labs, gave me additional knowledge, confidence and skills that have helped me have success thus far. I had no idea how I was doing as a recent grad during my first two months working, until I was recognized for outstanding physical therapy practice. Despite my hard work, it wouldn’t have been achieved without the guidance and education from USciences.”
Throughout his time at USciences, Martin had many significant experiences. A particularly memorable experience was his involvement in an interprofessional communication workshop, where he had the opportunity to test out his communication skills with an actual patient.
“This experience put me in a real life situation with a frustrated mother of a patient, surrounded by other healthcare professionals and students,” says Martin. “This moment was impactful to me as it ingrained in me the importance of interprofessional communication in order to provide the most optimal care for our patients and their families. This collaborative practice occurred before our first clinical experience, which started me off with good fundamentals.”
In addition to the curriculum and the real-world experiences, the kindness and support from his professors made an immense difference in his education and success.
“The professors in the program truly care about the success of their students,” says Martin. “It makes a difference when you can feel that somebody cares for your success and I believe that is a large factor in the great outcomes of students from Usciences.”
Categories: Profile, Samson College of Health Sciences, Department of Physical Therapy, Physical Therapy, Alumni, Proven Everywhere