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FEATURED MEMBER :Samantha Caravette, SPT, IPTA SSIG President

The IPTA is proud of our fascinating and influential members who are working hard towards advancing the physical therapy profession.

This past June, Samantha Caravette, SPT was elected by her peers to serve as our 2017-2018 SSIG President.

The Illinois Physical Therapy Association’s Student Special Interest Group (SSIG) is comprised of over 900 SPTs and SPTAs across Illinois. The SSIG provides a platform for Illinois students of physical therapy to communicate, share information and ideas, and participate in the Chapter and the Association.

Samantha is in her third year as a DPT student at the University of Illinois - Chicago. We asked Samantha... "What inspired you to pursue a degree to become a physical therapist?”

Caravette:"When I was in high school, my grandfather was diagnosed with lung cancer and went through a very lengthy stay in the intensive care unit following surgery to remove half of his lung. In the following years, my grandmother was also diagnosed with lung cancer and ultimately lost her battle against it during my sophomore year at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. At the time and due to my experience with their medical obstacles, I was studying biology as a pre-med student. As a future healthcare professional, I envisioned myself supporting patients through, possibly, the most difficult time in their lives. The more I thought about what I wanted out of the medical field, the more I was drawn to the physical therapy profession because of its dynamic yet compassionate and inspiring ambitions and initiatives. Now, as a third-year physical therapy student, I finally get to be that healthcare professional who devotes individualized time and care into each and every patient."

The newly elected leaders of the SSIG have already spent time this summer being orientated in their roles and holding their monthly board meeting. As the SSIG President what is the most important initiative you and the SSIG Board are working on?

Caravette: "The principle objective we are focusing our attention on is "connection." When we first came together to discuss our goals for serving the SSIG, we all agreed that facilitating student participation and fostering diversity within the physical therapy profession were our top priorities. Currently, we are working IPTA's Director of Student Activities, Matthew Nicholas, to enhance the student section of the IPTA website in order to develop it into a resource that student PT and PTAs look to for helpful information regarding school, finances, clinicals, and more. Additionally, we are working with Dr. Dawn Brown of Northern Illinois University to promote the physical therapy profession to under-represented students in high school and middle school so as to expand our diversity. As a board, we certainly have many ambitious goals and initiatives to conquer in our year. However, we are extremely motivated to make a lasting positive impact on the SSIG."

Samantha, the floor is yours – if you had the attention of all the SPT and SPTA members what message would you like to convey?

Caravette: "One of the most powerful tools you have is your voice. As an active member of your chapter, you have the power to enact a positive influence on physical therapy legislation, policy, and the profession as a whole. Since becoming a member of the APTA/IPTA, I have grown so much as a student not just because of the things I have learned in class but because of the things I have experienced being a member of an organization that strives for the enhancement of our profession. Furthermore, the progression of physical therapy allows us as healthcare professionals to provide better care and treatment for our patients. In the end, the APTA and IPTA rely on devoted members like YOU to make it effective and influential."

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Proud Partners of the IPTA

  • Athletico
  • ATI
  • BodyGears
  • DuPage Medical Group
  • Entropy
  • FYZICAL
  • IMPACT
  • NORTHERN REHAB
  • PHYSIO PARTNERS
  • PTS Inc
  • SPORTS AND ORTHO
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