Today I did a campus visit to a DPT program for the first time and I learned a lot more than I thought I would.
It was the University of North Dakota’s DPT program.
I was fortunate to meet with the faculty member I ended up meeting with. She had a lot of experience as a PT and had only been teaching in the program for about a year and a half.
We talked a lot about UND’s program. It was so helpful and really made me want to go to PT school even more.
are there research opportunities?
Apparently everyone in the program does some kind of research project. They are either solo or paired up with 1-2 other students.
Currently they have a project going on where PT students and music students are working together to research music therapy & Parkinson’s disease. ( SO cool! )
touring the facilities
She showed me around on a tour of the building which is in the same building as Occupational Therapy, Physician Assistants, and the Med School. I got to see the lab rooms and the classrooms. One of the labs was pretty interesting because it had a fake bedroom and a fake kitchen inside. I say fake, but they were fully functional. Like the refrigerator was the size of your regular old refrigerator.
She told me that the rooms acted as lab settings for the students to get a realistic, hands-on learning experience in an actual kitchen or bedroom. Students learned about how patients could get up from different types of chairs and couches and all the little things that go along with activities of daily living.
I have never thought about how we move differently to get out of a soft cushioned chair vs. a hard wooden chair until this tour!
The faculty member took her time answering my questions and really made me feel welcome to ask her more.
why did you choose PT?
On the tour, I asked her how and why she became a PT, and I’m glad I did!
[ SIDE NOTE ] And by the way, I got the idea to ask that ^^question from Pre-PT Grind — they have some great videos about the DPT application process including how to prepare for campus visits!
It was amazing getting to hear her story and see her light up when she told it. She said she knew she wanted to work in healthcare and started out as a CNA ( certified nursing assistant ). While she was working as a CNA she started being responsible for driving the patients to their therapy sessions. Once she saw what a physical therapist did she knew it was for her. She ended up enrolling in The College of St. Scholastica’s program.
And I thought, ‘what a unique story!’ I don’t know if it’s common or not, but I have never heard anyone say they went from CNA to PT. Either way, it’s an interesting path.
I always say that is one of the things I love about DPT — all the different paths you can take to get there and what you can do with it once you get it.
my path to DPT
To be honest, I didn’t get the best feedback today on my application. My GPA is low, and UND may not have been the smartest place for me to apply to – in terms of who they usually accept…
I’m at the point where my low GPA is like a fly that I’m constantly swatting away… Like plz go away, but it keeps coming back. But I’ve been trying to counteract it for so long, that it doesn’t seem THAT detrimental anymore. I realize that it’s a negative on my application, but I know I’ll find the best fit DPT program for me and I believe in myself enough that I know I’ll be able to figure out a way to reach my goals.
As Marie Forleo says, “Everything is figureoutable.”
I’m currently hiding from the cold ( it’s 0 degrees! ) in a coffee shop, but it’s okay because I’m getting some work done and sipping on a HOT chamomile + peppermint tea. I love when places have loose leaf teas because then I get to have fun making up my own blend!
do you have any other advice for a campus visit to a DPT program?
^^ or even leave any resources in the comments you might know about 🙂