The University of Montana (UMT)/ Rehab Essentials tDPT Program has greatly influenced my career as a physical therapist and educator. I selected this program due to the amazing access it provides to the top academicians and clinicians in the profession. The added bonus was the reasonable cost and the ability to receive credit for my preparedness at the post-graduate Master’s level.
I began my degree while taking a hiatus from the academic environment as a Director of Clinical Education. While serving part-time as a physical therapist at Mission Health System, Asheville, NC, ranked one of the nation’s Top 15 Health Systems in 2013 by Truven Health Analytics, I was able to help institute an early mobility initiative, where all of patients in the intensive care unit (ICU) were mobilizing, if stable, six hours after ICU admission. The Pharmacology course was essential for me, as I needed have a sound understanding of the effects of the copious medications that patients were receiving, given the critical nature of each patient. Very few of our patients were sedated, which allowed the focus to be on adequate pain control and patient control. Legal and Ethical Issues was another essential course for me, as I was often involved in team approach decision making about patients' end of life decisions. Many of the patients that I treated still walked days and hours before they died. The Professionalism course, in many ways, enabled me to maintain high academic standards and levels of communication in the clinical environment. Medical Imaging enabled me to better communicate with the ICU pulmonologists and radiologists to determine best positioning, and to help rule in fractures, deep vein thromboses and pulmonary emboli that were symptomatic with mobility. My education through UMT/Rehab Essentials clearly enabled me to rise to the top as a PT. In the fall of 2012, I returned to education, but this time, on the clinical side as the Director of Mission Health System Education Services, coordinating the educational opportunities for greater than 1,300 students, observers and interns who matriculate to Mission annually.
The University of Montana (UMT)/ Rehab Essentials tDPT Program is a fantastic education for which I am most grateful!