A Series of Beginnings
My journey to PT school has been a series of beginnings. Each new school, new job and new semester was a source of excitement and revitalization that quickly fizzled out. No career idea could hold my interest for long; however, I wound up with a BS in environmental science and policy and the sense that the only real constant in my academic life was a desire to learn and do as many new things as I could.
When I graduated in 2011, I started working as a paralegal in a healthcare-related field. I was interested in law school but, once again, my interest was soon depleted. Not to mention the sedentary lifestyle and lack of sunlight were rapidly zombifying me. I knew I had to find something else.
At work, I spent most of my days reading and summarizing the medical records of people who had been hurt in car accidents. More often than not, I was lost in reading people's stories instead of actually working. In particular, the physical therapy narratives radiated with empathy and engagement. I was naturally drawn to the idea of helping people without the use of unnecessary surgery or extensive medications and looked into the profession. After beginning observation hours, my decision was made.
I started PT school applications in the summer of 2013. All the choices, different requirements and using PTCAS quickly became overwhelming. Should I go out of state? Was cost most important? What about hospital affiliations? I had no idea what to do! But eventually I applied to four schools in Florida and decided on Nova Southeastern University (NSU) because it was the most financially responsible, as I can live with family nearby. NSU also has significantly more weeks of clinical compared to the other programs, great facilities, a diverse curriculum and a strong reputation in South Florida.
In the end, I chose physical therapy because it's a profession with endless opportunities for learning, changing your perspectives and creating new beginnings, for yourself and for your patients. I'm looking forward to the next three years and hope that I'll complete PT school and enter the profession as a prepared, open-minded clinician with room for many more beginnings.
I can't wait to share my struggles, successes and anxious all-nighters and am looking forward to any advice, support and feedback you can offer. Thank you for reading!