Physical Therapy 2017-2018 Year-in-Review

2017-2018 Year in ReviewLast August, we started the year by welcoming the Class of 2020! After years of undergraduate coursework and after successfully navigating an increasingly competitive application process, they arrived at Pacific University ready to work toward their new career.

Throughout the year, our program continued to work on our strategic plan and frequently highlighted student, alumni and faculty accomplishments on our website. We also focused on revising the interview component of our admissions process and developing strategies to further increase the diversity of our classes. What follows are highlights from the academic year.

In September 2017, we sent members of our Assessment Committee to the Annual Conference on Teaching & Learning Assessment at Drexel University in Philadelphia. On the first night, we debated Pat’s vs. Geno’s. For the next three days, we had the opportunity to learn from leading experts about different strategies to improve our own assessment plan.

This year, we started a multifaceted Student Success Program, and we are thankful for the efforts of our tutors: Dr. Evan Liu PT ’15 and PT students from the class of 2019: Amy Allen, Ashten Allen, Ashlee Baltich, Tabitha Galindo, Heather Higashi, Marissa Roos, Kristen Santos and Kaitlin Silva. Throughout the academic year, tutors worked tirelessly with first-year students in the early mornings, late evenings and over weekends to master content and improve performance. The program continues to evolve and, to date, has objectively improved student success. Our program also made a concerted effort to increase service and advocacy opportunities for students by dedicating resources to support their commitment and energy. (See Page 2.) To their credit, the students also proposed and approved a new Physical Therapy Student Association officer position, community service and outreach coordinator, to further improve our program’s impact.

Effective Jan. 1, 2018, we officially changed our name to the School of Physical Therapy and Athletic Training. In addition, the Athletic Training program moved into a newly renovated space with a dedicated office suite and fully equipped instructional laboratory.

At CSM in New Orleans, La., and the OPTA Annual Conference in Wilsonville, Ore., we celebrated our 40th anniversary. Alumni from across the country and decades came to reminisce and build new friendships. There was a memorable sense of Boxer pride on those nights.

In March, after almost 18 years of outstanding service to Pacific, Tamarra Mellick moved back to her home state for a new opportunity in the Office of Institutional Research at California Polytechnic State University. She will be remembered for her kindness, patience and work ethic. This year we also owe a special thanks to alumna Dr. Anne (Turner) O’Donnell and Dr. Clare Lewis, both of whom came out of retirement on relatively short notice to help the program by teaching Pediatric Neuromuscular System and Psychological Aspects of Illness & Disability, respectively. I am personally thankful for their commitment to the Class of 2019.

At the end of the academic year, Dr. Erin Jobst was elected by the Class of 2018 to give their graduation speech at the World Trade Center in Portland, and I had the privilege of hooding our 46 new doctors of physical therapy in Forest Grove before their family, friends and faculty.

During the next academic year, Dr. Erin Bompiani will transition to her new role as core faculty.

The PT program is also in the process of developing a new faculty mentorship program, new resources for professional behaviors, further developing our assessment capacity, and reviving a pediatric clinic for underserved community populations.

It has been another incredible year, and we want to thank everyone who supports the PT program! Each day, we continue to advance the program by working together to support each other, our community and our profession. We, Boxer Nation, have much to be proud of and thankful for!

You can read a printer-friendly version of the Physical Therapy newsletter here.

Jan. 23, 2019