Brittney Johnson is currently in her 3rd and final year of physical therapy graduate school at Saint Catherine University and she has received the MN APTA Outstanding Student Award. Each year, the four DPT Programs in the state of Minnesota select one recipient based on participation, GPA, community service, initiative, as well as other aspects. She is in the clinic fulltime treating patients and improving her skills as a physical therapist. She graduated 2007 with a Sports Medicine Minor. The Sports Medicine minor introduced her to many aspects of patient care that carried over into the physical therapy profession including taping, wrapping, modalities, and exercise prescription. "I was already familiar with these areas heading into physical therapy graduate school, so I was able to improve these skills even more while focusing on new material. The minor provided me with a good combination and base of athletic training skills and strength and conditioning skills needed in my current profession." The faculty in the Sports Medicine Department were "great role models and helped provide me with the skills, guidance and advice I needed as I continued on to graduate school. The Sports Medicine program helped me develop numerous and priceless skills that have allowed me to succeed in the physical therapy profession."
She spent four months in the training room as a sports medicine assistant for summer camps, tournaments, and fall collegiate sports. "I improved my skills in emergency care as well as treating injuries. I performed research on heat illnesses and presented my findings to other sports medicine assistants to help protect our athletes. Most importantly, I improved my "bed-side manner" by being directly involved in the athlete's care." This helped her transition into the physical therapy field by being comfortable and confident in my communication skills while treating patients.
Brittney's advice to current or future Sports Medicine students:
"Use all the available resources given to you. Enroll in as many different Sports Medicine classes as possible in order to have an expansive and knowledgeable background. Use the internship opportunities, work in the training room, or become a strength and conditioning coach to help improve your physical skills. Class work can only prepare you so much, but these areas can really advance your skills."