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Physical Therapy (to get better physically and mentally) - Admission Essay

cjw11 1 / 1  
Sep 28, 2010   #1
I am applying to physical therapy school. The essay prompt is: Which personal characteristics and motivating factors have led you to pursue the profession of physical therapy?

I think I have a solid foundation but I do not think it is strong enough yet. Any help is greatly appreciated.

One of the greatest abilities that we as humans possess is having the emotional capacity to show empathy. Empathy helps us to connect and be able to relate to others in a way that other animals can't. Early on I realized that empathy was a major part of my personality. In conflicts I would always be able to understand the two sides and friends came to me as a mediator. When friends experienced woes in their lives that they did not necessarily want the whole student population to hear about, they would come to me. I found out I was able to identify with their worries, even if I myself had not experienced what they had. From this I learned that when people are in need of assistance, the person they seek out needs to display understanding and caring in order to give the troubled person a sense of calm.

As time went on I realized how important empathy is in the medical world. From migraine problems to tearing my ACL, I have seen many doctors over the years. Of the doctors I have seen, the ones that stick out in my mind are the ones who showed me that cared and would do whatever they could to help me get healthier. When I tore my ACL the surgeon that worked on my knee made me feel as if I was just another knee surgery he had to get through. He came off as cold and uncaring about me as a person. I believe that this did affect my mindset negatively. It made me think that the process involving my knee was going to be a long and dreadful process. However this completely changed when I met the physical therapist I was going to be working with over the next six months. Her empathy and passion to get me better brightened up my spirits as well. With her help, I saw that rehabilitation may be a long process but one that should be looked at in a positive attitude. It was the path I had to take to get back to the athletic future that I desired.

The physical therapist was not only the person that helped me get better physically, but was there mentally to support me the whole way. She played a huge role in my life during those months of rehabilitation and without her empathy I know I would not have done as well as I did. I saw all of the different people that came in through the doors and seeing them get better week after week with me was truly amazing. The experience made me wholeheartedly want to become a physical therapist. I have the drive not only to help people but to be that person that is there to guide them through a time in their life that they may not be too positive. I know what it is like to be in pain and want to get better. Not only with my knee pain but also my migraines. Currently I am pursuing going to physical therapy for my neck to help with my migraines because I truly believe in the power of physical therapy. Being a patient myself of physical therapy I believe that I can turn my past difficulties into strength for helping others to recover.

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