Figure 1: The children enjoyed the large parachute used at the end of the program
by SLU DPT Students Kelsey Bequette (Class of 2021) and Lauren Foster (Class of 2022)
The Saint Louis University Physical Therapy Student Association (SLU PTSA) successfully applied for and was awarded one of 18 “1818 Community Engagement Grants” for the second year in a row. These grants aim to provide the foundation for students to make a positive impact in the community through partnership with local organizations. On Friday, January 31, 2020, PTSA, in collaboration with the SLU Athletic Training and Nutrition and Dietetics Programs, hosted the 2nd annual ‘Building Bridges for the Future’ event. We partnered with a local community organization, Unleashing Potential (UP), to bring children ages 3-12 years old to the Saint Louis University Campus to learn about the health science professions. This project specifically focused on providing the children with an introduction to how the study of science bridges to health care professions, including Physical Therapy, Athletic Training, and Nutrition and Dietetics. This event was also designed to bring the children to the Saint Louis University Campus, providing them the opportunity to envision themselves pursuing higher education in the future.
Figure 2: SLU students were excited to volunteer
During the event, the children participated in various educational activities centered around our three health science professions. Activities focused on basic human anatomy through coloring, exercise and stretching techniques, nutrition, and healthy food choices, as well as wound care and balancing. SLU student volunteers from each of the three respective programs had a great time participating in the activities and engaging the children of UP throughout the activities. Many of the children had attended the program last year and were excited to be back on SLU’s campus and learn more about the health science field. As always, we had a great time collaborating with our community partner to advocate for our professions and for the futures of the children in our community. We are looking forward to working with these children again in the future and continuing to develop our relationship with Unleashing Potential!
Figure 3: SLU students assisted UP children in tracing their bodies to learn about human anatomy
Figure 4: SLU Students and UP children participated in exercise activities such as a jumping jack circle
Saint Louis University DPT Students Kelsey Bequette (Class of 2021) and Lauren Foster (Class of 2022) are former PTSA Co-Presidents.