This is a sponsored post by FOX Rehabilitation, a supporter of NewGradPhysicalTherapy & new graduate physical therapists 😎
“People coming out, and I’ve seen this in the new grads, know more and more every year,” says Dr. Will Dieter, PT, DPT, GCS, FSOAE and FOX Rehabilitation’s Director of Physical Therapy Clinical Services and the FOX Geriatric Residency in Physical Therapy. “You know what to look for. You know what the issues are. The only question is just not second-guessing yourself.”
When he had just graduated PT school, Dr. Dieter started working with the geriatric population and realized that this was a patient population that would benefit extraordinarily from therapeutic intervention. “It would allow me to continue to grow, and really make these changes in people’s lives that they appreciated and that were meaningful.”
“The decision for me to work with a house calls organization right out of school was an incredibly hard one for me,” says Dr. Travis King, PT, DPT, GCS and FOX’s Vice President of Quality Assurance and Professional Development. “I asked a lot of questions about the new grad program. I wanted to really know, what is the structure of this mentor program?”
FOX’s Emerging Professionals Mentor Program offers structure and dedicated resources to new graduates in order to support them at the beginning stages of their careers—and any point beyond. “In school, you learn a lot about all different types of diagnoses,” says Dr. King. “It’s oftentimes the job of a clinician who’s going to work in geriatrics to really gain on-the-job training and knowledge about how to prescribe balance training and exercise to older adults.” At FOX, King found that there was already a structure in place to provide support to clinicians looking for such training, including resource materials, literature, and even a geriatric residency.
The Geriatric Residency in Physical Therapy at FOX is open to clinicians looking to learn more about their area of specialty. It’s one of many career development opportunities offered by FOX. “I’ve had the opportunity, six or seven years into my career, to achieve three-quarters of what I wanted to do in my entire career,” says Dr. Dieter. PTs at FOX, he adds, “are accelerating their careers and their ability to be optimally effective and important to society, because of the resources and the models of this place.”
“You’re going to have the support, and you’re going to get over that fear, and some of those issues, sooner rather than later,” Dr. Dieter says. “I think the worst thing is to continue to have these fears in the back of your head and never really address them, because no matter where you go and what you do in this profession, you’re going to not really excel the way you probably could,” without addressing those initial fears.
“This is an entrepreneurial, privately held organization that values clinical care, and values hard work and autonomy and clinical decision making,” says Dr. King, and he could feel that as a new grad. “If I had to give advice to an emerging professional who was looking at their first job that they’re going to take, I’d say, ask a lot of questions. Know what you’re getting into.”
Dr. Dieter agrees. “I would encourage people coming out of school to think about what their long-term goal is. How will the place you’re going to help you get there, long-term? Not just what the first year salary is, what the benefits might be. It’s playing the long game. Know where you want to go, ultimately, and don’t be closed off to any opportunity.”