As we make our way through school, we start to think about the opportunities beyond graduation and whether or not they are right for us. You might hear your classmates discussing their options, which may include jumping into practice at an outpatient ortho clinic, traveling physical therapy, residencies, home health, and more. Sometimes, it is difficult to determine what is right for yourself amidst all of these plans and, let’s face it, really awesome ideas.
From the Academy of Geriatric Physical Therapy, if you value:
- Older people and aging as a positive event.
- The unique contributions of physical therapy to enhance the quality of life of all older adults.
- Collaborative relationships with internal and external constituencies.
- Quality of life as enhanced throughout the lifespan by following principles of health promotion, prevention of disease, and appropriate rehabilitation intervention.
- The highest standards of clinical practice as supported by research and education.
- The current and potential contributions of each physical therapist, physical therapist assistant, and student member.
- Communication among the members.
- Leadership’s accountability to the members considering their current and anticipated needs.
- The cultural diversity of each member and older adult.
Then maybe exploring geriatrics might be good for you!
How can you do this?
- Be involved in the Neurologic and Geriatric SIG here at Duke DPT. There are volunteering opportunities available at PACE, a Senior Community Care Center, as well as other local avenues to serve.
- Join the Academy of Geriatric Physical Therapy and receive up to date research and resources for the geriatric population.
- If you are later in your academic career, begin researching geriatric residencies and see if that might fit your plan.
- Explore sessions at CSM that focus on the geriatric population.
Above all, keep an open mind and be willing to experience, explore, and grow.