Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Matt Johns shares his A 10 Experience

Summing up the amazing time we all had in Atlantic City with the band/Saintsation/basketball team is not an easy task.  From the moment our bus arrived I can honestly say that we didn't stop moving around for 72 straight hours.  Between the pregame lunch and dinners to beeboppin around the boardwalk outside it was non-stop action.  Not to mention the games, the whole reason we were truly there.  The environment in that arena was amazing for every game.  Our first match up against La Salle provided us with the sense that everyone wanted us long gone and back in St. Louis.  The constant cheers when La Salle got a controversial call.  The jeers and hushed crowd when Kwamain was knocking down shots left and right.  All of it was great.  It was kind of cool to be "that" team with the "X" on your back where everyone wants you gone.  Regardless of all of this, we prevailed and that night was phenomenal.  Everywhere you went with SLU apparel on you instantly became a local star.  Everyone starts asking you about the school and the team and they'll listen to anything you have to say.  Not to mention, running into any La Salle fans could have provoked an argument with nothing more than a glance.

Day 2 was equally as exciting but this time the neutral court was much more "neutral."  As players from both teams came to the court you could tell that we were no longer the bad guys.  It was almost as if because Dayton lost to Xavier the previous day we had instantly gained a new, and large, fan base.  Students in UD gear were just as into SLU taking down Xavier as we were.  Sadly that game didn't turn out as we had hoped, but that night we learned a little more about post-season basketball: The second you lose to a team, you instantly form temporary bonds with the team facing whomever you lost to.  As if there were no A10 rivalries ever to be seen, we were out and about with Dayton and St. Bonaventure fans all with one goal in mind: cheer against Xavier until you were blue in the face....and this was awesome. 

Day 3 led to even more surprises.  We all had intentions of playing it low key, attending the championship game, and then returning to our hotel for a relaxing last day.  Boy, were we wrong about that. 30 minutes before the Xavier/St. Bonaventure tip off we got a notice that SBU wanted us to come play as their band.  Without hesitation there was an instant sense of "yes" and we were on our way into the arena with the Bonaventure student section.  Like I said, you make friends easily when you both have a common goal in mind...especially when this involves taking down Xavier.  The student section was rowdy, just as we had hoped.  The best part was that Bonaventure ended up doing what we had all hoped by winning an A10 title.  To add to the fun we decided to take our band outside to the boardwalk just behind our hotel and play a few songs to the passersby.  Rather than adding a little atmosphere to the area, we created an instant party!  After playing no more than 2 songs we had hundreds...yes hundreds...of St. Bonaventure/SLU/Dayton fans dancing and singing and clapping along and just having a blast knowing that they were in the tourney to come in just one week.  You can ask anyone in the band - this little 30 minutes of playing was probably the best time they've ever experienced as a part of the pep band.  After we decide to wind it down a bit we all begin to take little adventures around the rest of the boardwalk and head up to a local sports bar area to watch with the Saintsations where SLU will be placed in the tourney.  Needless to say we were all going nuts when we saw that number "9" next to our ever glorious Billiken logo. 

Clearly there are hundreds upon hundreds of more details that could be added, but I think you get the point.  It was a trip we will never forget and I can only hope that this tradition continues on for years to come.  For now though, its tourney time and all that matters is rooting on our Bills!  Let's hope for an amazing run and some good basketball ahead!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Volunteer with Casa de Salud!

Since graduating from SLU with degrees in Spanish and PT (MPT 2008, DPT 2010), I
hoped for an opportunity to be able to combine two of my biggest passions. I found my
first chance when had the opportunity to volunteer at La Clinica, a Spanish healthcare
clinic in south St. Louis. I loved the opportunity to brush up on my Spanish skills, and
more importantly, to serve an underserved population and fulfill the Jesuit mission I
embraced during my time at SLU. When La Clinica closed, another opportunity emerged to provide pro-bono PT services. Casa de Salud is a health and wellness center dedicated to meeting the needs of patients who encounter barriers to accessing other sources of care, emphasizing services to new Hispanic immigrants. It is located in a newly renovated building close to the SLU medical campus and is open 7 days/week, including some evening hours, which makes it easy to schedule around work, family schedules, etc. Our PT volume has remained high over the last year since I began, and it would be helpful to bring in some more help, especially this summer when I am on maternity leave. Casa is very supportive of our mission there, and has provided us with equipment (weights, swiss ball, theraband, etc.) as well as Physiotools programmed in English and Spanish. Fluency in Spanish is NOT required – anyone willing to donate their time can be set up with a translator during their sessions. I look forward to seeing continued growth at Casa, with the help and dedication of other PTs! If interested in volunteering, or if you have any other questions, please feel free to contact me at: Janelle.A.Burge@gmail.com. Gracias!

- Janelle Burge

Happy Pi Day! 3/14

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

As of today there is only one more month until Focus on P.T. Day, Friday, April 13, 2012!

We greatly anticipate meeting students admitted to the class of 2018 and their families, as well as sharing all that our program has to offer. If you are an ADMITTED student of the Program in Physical Therapy at Saint Louis University and you are interested in joining us for Focus on P.T. Day please note that the weekend of April 13, 2012 will be both a busy and exciting one for St. Louis, so if you are considering attending and you are coming from out of town please register and make hotel arrangements as soon as possible.  


Friday, March 9, 2012

Photos from Musculoskeletal Conditions III

Check out some photos from Musculoskeletal Conditions III: 

Aaron Parr

Christine Lucas

AJ Van Alstyne 

Denver II Motor Development Kits Released!

Denver II Kits for DPT 405 Growth and Human Development are beginning to be released. Denver II was designed to monitor the development of infants and pre-school aged children.  Kits include a variety of tools from yarn to blocks to even raisins! Keep posted for more on Denver II.

Students Heather Crosby and Claire McInerney with their Denver II kits

Checking kits out

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Meet Jen Wilcox

Meet Jen Wilcox, a teaching assistant for Saint Louis University’s Program in Physical Therapy, a triathlete, a fan of Anne Gunn’s, and a former gymnast. Read more to discover what Jen’s clinical experience has been like, what inspired her to be a TA, and what advice she would give to someone in their last professional year.

Where are you from? What is your family like?
I’m from St. Louis, MO…However my parents are from Vermont, so I was not raised with all the typical St Louis traditions. I have one younger brother; he’s a mechanical engineer in Milwaukee, WI.
What inspired you to pursue physical therapy?
I had various injuries as a young athlete competing in gymnastics and running cross country. I participated in my fair share of PT and this sparked my initial interest in the profession.

Where did you graduate from?

I received my undergraduate degree from SLU along with a minor in Psychology. I also received my PT degree from SLU which includes a Masters and DPT.

Jen’s dog, Addie
Are you a member of APTA?
As a student I was a member of APTA, however I currently am not a member.

What research have you been involved with?
I assisted with data collection during my time as a student at SLU for Mark Reinking & Ann Hayes’ research.

In what clinical settings have you participated in?
My clinical experience began with St. John’s Mercy Medical Center where I worked for 4 ½ years with inpatients. I later transitioned to a combination of inpatient and outpatient which lasted for about 6 months. I worked with Mercy Therapy Services for about 6 months concentrating in outpatient sports and women’s health. Since 2010 I have worked with CCCE for Mercy Hospital St. Louis, and I still currently work there.

Where do you assist at Saint Louis University and how long have you been there?
I have worked at SLU since 2005 and have enjoyed all the labs that I assisted in. Currently I am assisting in the Physical Agents II lab.

What types of service activities have you organized or participated in with regards to a local or national level?
At Saint Louis University I participated in the SLU Cross Country Turkey Trot 5K and the Hustle for your Health 5K.  In the community I participated in Backstoppers Charity Events, MS 150 Century Rides, and Dream Factory Holiday Shopping for children from Cardinal Glennon & St. Louis Children’s Hospital.

If you were not a physical therapist what would you be?
I would be a professional Triathlete…if my body would hold up.

Jen’s cats, Oliver and Shiloh
What is your favorite Saint Louis restaurant?
Anne Gunn’s     
Where is your favorite place to travel?
Lake Tahoe, CA
What is your favorite movie?  
Thomas Crown Affair

If you could travel anywhere, where would it be?
Europe – plans to go this fall!

 What is your favorite area of physical therapy?
Women’s Health
What led you to Saint Louis University? What inspired you to be a TA?   Working with students in the university setting presents a different challenge from working with students as well as patients in the clinic.  It keeps me up to date with current teaching & research, and gives me a sense of pride that I can give back to a program that helped me become the professional woman I am today.

Can you tell us something about yourself that might surprise your students to know about you? Any strange or interesting hobbies, activities, etc.?
I have been a long distance runner for many years.  I have completed 9 marathons, including Boston in 2007. I recently entered the world of triathlon and I am currently training for my 1st Ironman race in Louisville, KY in August 2012 where I will swim 2.4 miles in the Ohio River (yuck!), bike 112 miles, and run a full marathon 26.2 miles.  Did I mention it’s in August?!

Jen and her husband on a skiing trip
 Were you involved in a lot of physical activities as a child? Many sports?  
My dad was a collegiate gymnast & trained with several Olympians in the late 70’s/early 80’s.  The running joke in my family is that I was tumbling before walking.  I competed in gymnastics until I was 16 years old, and then coached gymnastics for 3 years while my running career took off.

What was your first job?  
My 1st job was as a “volunteer” at a preschool during the summer after 6th grade. I was only 12 years old, so the owners (family friends) couldn’t officially “hire” me until the following summer when I was 13 and could work limited hours under a special work permit.  My parents didn’t want me to sit at home & watch TV all day, and I argued that I was too old to go to day camp anymore.  So I would play with the preschoolers during the day, ride my bike to gymnastics practice, and then back to the preschool.

Jen with Saint Louis University Program in Physical Therapy students

What was your first job related to physical therapy?
My 1st PT job was working for Mark & Tricia as a tech in the student health center during the summer.  It was a great experience & I loved working with the athletes.

What would your advice be to a first year physical therapy student?  
Take it all in…have fun, but study hard.

What about someone in their last professional year?
Take advantage of the career services on campus while you can: mock interviews, resume proofing, job fairs & searches.  Give yourself a break if you can after your final clinical before studying & taking boards…you won’t forget everything you learned in a few weeks!

Meet Sarah Schlomer

Meet Sarah Schlomer, TA for Saint Louis University’s Program in Physical Therapy, APTA member, secretary of the SLU DCHS Alumni Board, fan of La Jolla, California, and ballroom dancer. Read the following interview to learn a little bit about where Sarah is from, what projects she has accomplished, what plans she has for the future, and what she gains from her patients.    

Where are you from?
I was born & raised in Cincinnati, OH.  For those from Cincy, I attended Mother of Mercy High School.  Go Bobcats! (Yes, it is not just a St. Louis thing!) My grandmother, Dorothy, my mother, Helen, & my younger sister & future brother-in-law, Megan & Nick, still reside in Cincinnati along with my furry nephew, Brutus.

Sarah’s furry nephew, Brutus

How did you become interested in physical therapy?  In high school I experienced multiple musculoskeletal injuries due to school sports. During that time I was treated by a number of wonderful PTs at a local clinic.  The first PT I had, Melissa Kontis, PT, ATC, inspired me to look deeper into PT as a possible career.  During my time as a patient & my 235 volunteer hours there she took extra time to explain the field to me, answer questions, & demonstrated first-hand how our profession can make a positive impact in the lives of others.

Where did you graduate from? I graduated in May 2003 with a BS in Exercise Science & minors in Psychology & Theology, January 2005 with my MPT, & August 2006 with my DPT – all from SLU.
Are you a member of the APTA? I have been an APTA member since I was a student at SLU, and I am a currently an acute care, orthopaedics, & geriatrics section member.  I am also an APTA credentialed clinical instructor (CI).  As a student at SLU I was also inducted in Alpha Sigma Nu & Psi Chi.

What projects have you accomplished? What will you be working on in the future? I published my first journal article in Physical Therapy in 2006 with Randy Richter, Bill Siler, & Mary Krieger on academic productivity in PT programs.  This project was started while I was a student at SLU, and I learned a great deal about the process from all three of them.  Currently, I am learning the process of publishing a textbook while working with Ginge Kettenbach on the next edition of the SOAP Notebook.   
If time and resources would ever permit it, I would love to do research in the future with looking at ankle and hip injuries in dancers and/or figure skaters.

In what settings have you worked in previously?  Since graduation I have worked full-time in a variety of settings:  outpatient neuro and ortho, acute rehab, & acute care—primarily ortho/trauma/surgery.  I am presently splitting my clinical practice with 6 months in outpatient & 6 months in acute care at Saint Louis University Hospital.  I also serve as a clinical instructor for students of all levels in their PT education from several PT schools.
I started assisting with labs & courses at SLU in 2006, including:  DPT412 Kinesiology II, DPT514 Physical Agents II, DPT519 Biomechanical Interventions, IPE460 Evidence-Based Practice, and the former tDPT690 Topics in Research.
While DPT514 and DPT412 are the ones I have participated with the longest, I would have to say that DPT519 is my favorite because the lab is very hands-on & the information & skills learned in the lab will have a profound effect on the lives of the patients that the students will work with in the future.

What service are you involved in? I am in the third year of a 3-year term as the secretary of the SLU DCHS Alumni Board.  Besides assisting with organizing trivia night and other fundraisers for student scholarships, the Alumni Board has afforded me multiple opportunities to serve the SLU and Greater St. Louis community at places such as Campus Kitchen, Ronald McDonald House, Send-Me St. Louis, and the United Way, among others.
In my clinical practice I am the department representative for the hospital-wide wound/tissue integrity committee.
When I was a student at SLU I served as a Eucharistic minister through Campus Ministry, a volunteer judge for the Greater St. Louis Speech & Debate League, class representative and secretary of the SLU PT StuCo.

Can you tell us a favorite quote or phrase?  My favorite phrase to live by is  Sine timore.  It is Latin for “without fear”.

Favorite quote:   “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”  ~Winston Churchill

If you were not a physical therapist, what would you be?  If I was not a physical therapist I would be a film/television or theatre writer & actor. I love the freedom that “the stage” provides you:  the ability to express what you feel, speak to & touch the audience on a deep level, and, in some instances, take on another personality & express a side of yourself that others never see.
My back-up to that:  working for the CIA.  I have always felt strongly about serving & protecting the country.

Where is your favorite place to travel?The most recent place I have traveled to for PT was San Diego, CA. If I magically win the lottery, I would retire to La Jolla, CA.  It is beautiful!

   What are your favorite movies?      
Past & present:  Good Will Hunting, Silence of the Lambs, The Descendants
   Can you tell us something about yourself that might surprise your students to know about you?  I am a classically trained pointé ballet dancer, but had to give it up after tearing my gastroc. In college I was a member of the founding SLU Crew team.
   Any strange or interesting hobbies, activities, etc.? In my free time I love ballroom dancing, figure skating, running, playing basketball & volleyball, taking in a good stage show, & watching my favorite TV show, Castle.
   Who is someone that inspires you? My grandmother, Dorothy, has been a driving force in my life & career.  She has supported me in every way imaginable, including hand-written letters every week while I was in college, and continues to be one of my biggest supporters today.  She has been a role model through the incredible work ethic she demonstrated for me while growing up & her tireless determination to live a full and selfless lifestyle despite the physical challenges she faces.  

Sarah and her grandmother, Dorothy

In the community?
In the community, the patients I have been privileged to work with have acted as mentors to me. They remind me daily of a quote from Maria Shriver:  “God puts mentors in your path.  They may not look like you, sound like you, or be what you expect.  But they always know more than you, and that’s the whole point.”  I continue to learn that if you keep your eyes open & listen to the wisdom that patients dispense, especially the geriatric population, you can learn valuable lessons about every facet of life and how to really live from those that have lived and learned from it.  While I hope that my skills help to empower them and improve their lives, I am blessed by the wisdom that they dispense.

Saint Louis University Program in Physical Therapy is named 5 in The Final Word on America’s Top 10 Physical Therapy Schools.

St. Louis University Program in Physical Therapy 
With an average freshmen retention rate of 87%, a faculty-to-student ratio of 1:12, and an average high school GPA of 3.6 for incoming freshmen, St. Louis attracts an impressive student body for its physical therapy program. More than 50% of freshmen ACT test scores were 24-29, with more than 30% with SAT scores of 1000-1099.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Saint Louis University
Doisy College of Health Sciences
Program in Physical Therapy
Irma Ruebling Distinguished Speaker Series

Julie M Fritz, PhD, PT, ATC
University of Utah, Department of Physical Therapy

Considering the Value of Physical Therapy Management for Patients with Low Back Pain

Thursday, March 22, 2012 at 5:30 pm in room 1043 of the Allied Health Building.  A reception immediately follows.

For more information contact Kate Lochhead (klochhea@slu.edu)

Testimony from Andrew Tigges, Presentor at CSM 2012

I am a first professional year physical therapy student from Springfield, MO.  As a sophomore, I began assisting with research on people with multiple sclerosis with Dr. Wagner in the motion analysis lab.  A part-time job working with the numbers behind the scenes eventually led to more responsibilities with her research, including recently being involved in writing an abstract and having a poster on walking limitations of people with MS.  At the 2012 APTA Combined Sections Meeting in Chicago, I presented the poster "Lower extremity muscle weakness better predicts walking limitations in people with multiple sclerosis than lower extremity strength asymmetry."  It was a great experience, and I was able to speak with clinicians from across the nation who work with MS patients daily.  While I am still unsure what area of physical therapy I will want to work in, whether in be within neurological, orthopedic, sports, or research-oriented contexts, working in the lab has enabled me to be more critical of articles from all areas of physical therapy and appreciate the importance of evidence-based practice in the profession at large.
                                                                                                    - Andrew Tigges


Thursday, March 1, 2012

3-2-1 And You’re Done! Women’s Health and Exercise

March 7, 2012
Simon Rec Center
Multipurpose Room 1

For Women of all ages, regardless of activity level, get excited to learn about:
1. The Advantages of Exercise
2. Common Health Risks
3. Nutritional Facts
4. An exercise program that will fit your busy schedule! 

**We encourage you to wear work-out clothes and RSVP to Khannie Dastgah at dastgahk@slu.edu**
Presented by 5th year Doctor of
Physical Therapy Students

Walk back into your old swimsuit: an 8 week program to get fit for the summer!

Friday, March 9th, 2012
Time: 12pm-12:50pm
Location: Medical Center Track
Rain Location: Simon Rec Indoor Track

Why Attend???
-Learn how to create a walking program
-Discover proper warm-up and cool-down techniques
-Practice proper posture and breathing while walking
-Learn what shoes fit you best!
-Get your questions answered!