Please respond to the following scenario: You are a student on a clinical rotation, in which you learn under the guidance of a physical therapist. One of your classmates has also been placed in the same clinic. This classmate is well-respected and is considered a leader in your class. At the clinical site, there have been some recent thefts from staff desks. There is a great deal of concern about this among the clinical staff. One morning, a patient whom you are treating tells you that he observed your classmate taking money from a staff member's desk. What do you do? Why did you choose this course of action? (3000 characters)
As a prospective physical therapy student, I have very high expectations for myself, as well as for the educational program I attend, and the other students and faculty involved with that program. Because of these expectations, it is very important to me that, when at a clinical location, I represent myself, and the Doctor of Physical Therapy program, in the most professional way possible, and insist that other students do the same. It is obvious that stealing from a clinical site would hurt the reputation of the individuals involved with the Doctor of Physical Therapy program, as well as possibly prevent future students from being able to use that clinical site as opportunity to learn.
However, it is also important to deal with difficult situations in a responsible and professional manner. My first action would be to privately approach the student in question, and ask if he would be willing to explain his side of the situation; it is likely that the patient who witnessed the incident may have misinterpreted the actions of the student. From there, I would encourage the student to approach the Lead Physical Therapist of the clinical site, as well as a member of the Doctor of Physical Therapy program faculty, to fully explain his actions. It would be very important to me to express myself in a manner that is neither accusatory nor disrespectful in any way, due to the complexity of the situation.
If the student in question were to avoid discussing the issue with either myself, the lead Physical Therapist of the clinical site, or a faculty member of the DPT program, I feel it would be my responsibility to present the matter to a faculty member or physical therapist at the clinical site. It would be my intent to express my interpretation of the facts in the most objective way possible, as to avoid unnecessary accusation of fault, and I would encourage the student in question to accompany myself to the meeting, to allow him the opportunity to explain his actions.
In conclusion, the pride that I would have in the Doctor of Physical Therapy program, and the expectations I hold myself to, would necessitate me to take the aforementioned actions to protect the reputation of the program and the people involved. I feel that following the pre-described course of action would offer the student in question the best opportunity to explain himself and retain his dignity. Furthermore, this method would limit any chance of miscommunication, as well as the number of people involved with the scenario. This would allow the situation to be dealt with in the most objective and fair manner possible.
Students in the DPT program learn at an urban campus, and ultimately will provide care to individuals from a wide variety of backgrounds. Please provide at least one specific example of a situation in which you interacted with people who are in some way different from you. (These differences could be related to disability, language, culture, religion, race, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, or age, for example). Please reflect on this experience and in your narrative response tell us what you learned from this experience, and how it has shaped you and/or the manner in which you interact with others. Additionally, please comment on some other personal attributes that will make you a good fit for the DPT program (3000 characters)
While working as a certified athletic trainer at the Aurora Rehabilitation Center in B, I had the opportunity to work with a variety of patients from various social, economic, and ethnic classes. An excellent example of working with a patient to overcome diversity involves my experience in treating a Spanish-speaking lady, whom was being treated for back pain.
On the day of this patient’s appointment, there was a scheduling conflict that caused the interpreter to arrive late to the therapy session. Due to the communication barrier, conventional methods of rehabilitation instruction could not be used.
However, it was important to me to ensure this patient was comfortable, and that our therapy appointment was productive and beneficial to her. By using alternative methods of communication, including exercise demonstration, and maintaining a light and positive demeanor, we were able to work together and accomplish the goals described by the primary physical therapist in the rehabilitation plan.
This experience taught me how important a positive attitude is to health care professionals, especially physical therapists, who work on a one-on-one basis with patients. By maintaining optimism, I have learned that patients will naturally be more open and enthusiastic for therapy, which will yield more productive results.
Furthermore, working with someone who has a social barrier has proved the significance of having a mindset that is eager to find solutions to problems, both planned for and unexpected. This experience has shown me that, as a physical therapist, it is important to meet challenges with an encouraging mindset. I feel that accepting these challenges and overcoming unexpected obstacles is an exciting aspect of physical therapy that keeps professionals actively engaged in their profession, and maintains motivation.
In addition to a positive attitude and a willingness to overcome challenges, I feel that my work experience has also instilled a deep understanding of how a successful physical therapist approaches the daily expectations of his or her career. Observing and practicing professional body language and communication skills with both patients and other healthcare professionals in the workplace will allow for a seamless transition into the role of a physical therapy student. By practicing appropriate body language and communication skills, one is able to convey a sense of professionalism, which creates an excellent therapist-patient, as well as teacher-student, dynamic.
My work experience, including the event described above, truly shows my ability to work with individuals, regardless of personal differences. It is my goal to maintain a positive attitude in all that I do, and to face challenges with the upmost optimism. Lastly, I feel that sustaining proper body mechanics and communication skills will allow me to make the most of my educational opportunities as a member of the Doctor of Physical Therapy program.
Describe your decision making process in choosing physical therapy as a career choice versus other health care careers (4500 characters)
The decision making process that has lead me to decide physical therapy is the perfect career for me was both challenging and exciting. This process required me to work harder than I ever have before, and has allowed me to develop relationships with some truly great professionals. This path has included work experience, additional coursework to satisfy the prerequisites for application, and the opportunity to grow as an individual and a professional.
After graduating from U with a degree in Athletic Training, I had the tremendous opportunity to work at the Aurora Rehabilitation Center in B. While working there, I had my first opportunity to work alongside, and shadow, physical therapists in the orthopedic outpatient setting. This gave me my first taste of what it really means to be a physical therapist, and I quickly made it my goal to become a physical therapist. I worked to absorb and learn as much as I possibly could about the physical therapy profession while working at the Aurora Rehab Center. Each day presented the opportunity to shadow a physical therapist during an evaluation of an interesting problem, or attend an informational presentation about a new technique over the lunch period. One aspect of physical therapy that really excited me was the opportunity to work with individuals on a personal level, and create individually tailored strategies to solve problems, which was demonstrated daily to me at work.
In addition to working at the Aurora Rehabilitation Center, I also made the decision to enroll in a cadaver based anatomy course offered through U, which was intended for students of the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program. My goal was to increase my overall understanding of how the human body works, as well as to get a sample of what it is like to be a physical therapy student. .
Taking that course was invaluable for a number of reasons. First off, I committed myself to working as hard as I possibly could, and ended the course with excellent scores. In order to excel in this course, I continued to develop sound organizational skills and study habits, which have carried over into life-long skills. This course also allowed me to network and build a relationship with the instructor, whom encouraged me to pursue my goal of becoming a physical therapy student, and enabled me by offering tremendous advice and a letter of recommendation.
My next step was to complete the remainder of the prerequisite courses necessary for application, as well as complete the Graduate Record Exam. It was my goal to use these courses and the GRE as an opportunity to showcase my educational abilities, and to prove that I have the ability to succeed in the classroom as a physical therapy student. I can proudly say that my efforts have paid off, and feel that these last few semesters at U, as well as the scores I earned when I attempted the GRE, accurately reflect my intellectual capabilities.
Lastly, I was eager to continue my experience working with physical therapists, but was interested in broadening my knowledge of the physical therapy profession and skill-set. I began working as a Rehab Aide at A, where I earned the opportunity to work with many different physical therapists in a multitude of settings. In addition to shadowing physical therapists and broaden my understanding of the career, I was able to further network with physical therapists in the M area, and expand on my knowledge of basic skills, which includes hands on experience with patient transfers, proper body mechanics and hand placement, and an introduction to various rehabilitation techniques.
I believe that passion is developed from complete immersion in something, and I have done all that I can to immerse myself in the field of physical therapy. I have worked alongside physical therapists in both the outpatient and inpatient setting, and have already begun building a basic skill set by doing so. I have sampled a graduate level physical therapy course, and expanded my understanding of the human body while earning exceptional scores. Lastly, I have committed myself to achieving excellent scores in both the prerequisite courses and the GRE exam, which I have done through hard work and dedication. I feel that I have done everything in my ability to present my strongest application possible to the Doctor of Physical Therapy program.EndFragment