Bellarmine University's Doctor of Physical Therapy
program welcomed 72 new students during a white coat ceremony on Friday afternoon in Frazier Hall.
The ceremony - where students are presented with lab coats as a symbol of their entry into the profession - serves as a matriculation for doctoral candidates as they begin their studies.
The new physical therapy students come from 17 states, and three of the students carry dual citizenship. They range in age from 21 to 42.
"This is one of the most exciting times in the program, as we welcome the newest group of students who begin their journey towards becoming our professional colleagues," said Dr. Beth Ennis, associate professor of physical therapy. "It is the bookend at the beginning of the program, with hooding and graduation at the end. Their energy and enthusiasm are contagious and the group continues to reinforce our belief in a bright health care future."
This was the School of Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences' 16th annual Dr. David A. Pariser Memorial White Coat Ceremony for physical therapy candidates. The ceremony was renamed in 2013 to honor a Bellarmine professor who passed away earlier that year.
The ceremony featured a keynote address by Dr. Nicole Stout, CEO of 3e Services, an information technology consulting firm. She is a renowned health care researcher, consultant, educator and advocate. Her keynote topic was “Breaking the Mold: Unprecedented Opportunity for the Future of Physical Therapy."
During the ceremony, students recited a physical therapist’s oath, pledging to respect the dignity of everyone, act with compassion, exercise sound judgment, demonstrate integrity, engage in lifelong learning and participate in efforts to meet the health care needs of all.
Bellarmine's Doctor of Physical Therapy program prepares students for licensure and practice in the field of physical therapy. Candidates for licensure must hold a post-baccalaureate degree in physical therapy from an accredited institution. Students are admitted to the professional program after completing a bachelor’s degree, along with all program prerequisites.