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MEET A MEMBER (s): Illinois Student Members running for National Office

Tuesday, October 2, 2018   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Matthew Nicholas
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MEET A MEMBER (s): Illinois Student Members running for National Office

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

APTA’s National Student Conclave (NSC) will take place this month in Providence, RI. Thousands of students nationwide will gather to network with their peers and mentors, attend outstanding educational programming, and participate in community service events.

Aside from the educational and social events planned for NSC, students at NSC will also meet the candidates for serving on the 2018-2019 Student Assembly Board of Directors (SABoD). Voting for the new SABoD leaders will take place during NSC on Friday, October 12th.

The IPTA is thrilled to have not one, but TWO Illinois student members on this year’s SABoD ballot. Betsy Miller Tolisano, SPT from University of Illinois at Chicago; candidate for President. Megan Lamphere, SPT from Northwestern University; candidate for Director of Communications.


Betsy Miller Tolisano, SPT

Betsy, what has inspired you to run for national office?

"I decided to run for a position on the SABoD because it is a great opportunity to get involved in the world of physical therapy outside of UIC. PT school involves a lot of textbook studying, but physical therapy is inherently a very social profession. I want to bring students and therapists together to learn from each other and advocate for our profession.My vision for the future of the Student Assembly and the physical therapy profession includes focusing on our role as primary care providers, incorporating more research and technology into practice, and playing a larger role in the prescription drug crisis. I want to be involved in the SABoD to start meeting and learning from students and therapists from across the country who share a common vision of the role of physical therapy to make people’s lives better."

Megan, having served on the IPTA SSIG leadership for two years, how has being an Illinois student leader prepared you for being slated for a national position?


Megan Lamphere, SPT

"I have thoroughly enjoyed my time serving in Illinois and connecting with students throughout the state. I took the leap to serve at the national level because I wanted to impact students on a grander scale. If elected, I would have the opportunity to network with many clinicians and bring that connection back to students. Illinois has a very active SSIG and I look forward to applying what has worked for us at the state level to the national level."

Megan, for students that have never been to an APTA national conference, what can “newbies” expect? Or what advice would you give?

Lamphere: "When students go to a national conference with an open mind, I guarantee their lives will be changed. The opportunity to meet clinicians at the top of their field and passionate students cannot be obtained in the classroom at home. Students can expect to be physically drained from the weekend but filled with inspiration from the energy surrounding them. My advice is that students take advantage of the after hour events, the section meetings, and the opportunity to ask questions after a session. The best conversations and connections happen when you take the chance and introduce yourself to someone you admire."

If you had the attention of all student member who are interested in becoming more involved, what advice do you have to give? 

Lamphere: "I would tell those students to attend NSC, start using Twitter as a professional platform and email someone on the SSIG telling them what you are interested in getting involved in. There are so many students willing to take the time to help you get involved, all you have to do is ask."

Miller Tolisano: "Just go for it! Don’t be afraid of taking a chance on something you are interested in. I never would have thought a year ago I’d be running for President of the Student Assembly Board of Directors. There are a million ways to get involved in the physical therapy world outside of school. I’ve learned about a ton of awesome special interest groups on Twitter and through other student APTA members. Many of these groups love to have student volunteers. It’s a great way to learn more about and start making connections in a specialty area of practice before you have to start making career decisions."

Learn more about Betsy, Megan, and all the candidates for Student Assembly Board of Directors by reading their candidate statements.   



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