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Physical therapy as a career choice vs other health care carrier PTCAS Personal Essay

JrFan88 1 / -  
Oct 1, 2012   #1
Here is a pretty rough draft of my personal essay for the PT school application. Any edits, comments, or suggestions are greatly appreciated.

Prompt- "Describe your decision making process in choosing physical therapy as a career choice versus other health care careers." I'm only allowed 4,500 characters including spaces. Thanks in advance. I am currently at 4,297 characters including spaces.

Being an athlete and sports fan since I was old enough to tie my shoes is probably the biggest motivator for my passion of exercise. As I got older it also contributed to one of my biggest interests, the human body. Long before I knew what physiology was and before studying it in college I was doing my own research. The first question that intrigued me about the human body was, "What is the burning sensation I feel during exercise?" Learning about lactic acid and anaerobic exercise made me know I wanted to be involved with physiology and healthcare. I was and remain fascinated by the functioning of the human body.

Once I was sure that I wanted a career in health care I needed to find a field that fit my interests and talents. My first internship was in a cardiac rehab facility which I enjoyed very much, but I knew it was not what I was truly interested in pursuing. I worked with many patients who started out not able to stand for more than a couple minutes and progressed to walking a few miles a day with ease. I even witnessed patients begin regular jogging routines which I would have never thought possible after a serious cardiac event. It was a very positive experience helping these patients become functional again, but my interest was more towards body mechanics and injury rehab. My next internship was in athletic training during my senior year of college. This experience was more closely related to my interests but not exactly what I wanted. While I did see some injury rehab I felt that most of my time was spent on the field hydrating and taping athletes. As much as I love sports I wanted a more direct involvement with rehabilitation. I did notice while in the training room another group of professionals who did nothing but work with the injured athletes. After a little investigating I found that these were the physical therapists. Unfortunately I was unable to shadow with the therapists before I graduated, but with a little luck after graduation that would change.

After graduation the timing could not have been more perfect than when my grandmother called to tell me the place she was doing physical therapy had an opening for a PT aide. I went for an interview and was hired a few days later. These last two years working for Ortho Virginia have been one of the greatest learning experiences of my life. It has reinforced many things I learned in school and shed new light on many subjects I did not know. One of the most interesting things I've learned is how closely the hip, knee, and ankle joint are related. For example patients who have ITB syndrome and knee pain often benefit from abductor hip strengthening and stretching to cure their knee pain. Another example I've witnessed is patients who have limited dorsiflexion in the ankle. These patients often times have dysfunction at the knee joint with their fibular head not gliding posteriorly when the ankle is dorsiflexed. This can be cured with mobilization of the fibular head to help it move appropriately. These two examples are only a fraction of the information I've learned, but they keep me interested in learning more. Another aspect of physical therapy I have enjoyed greatly is the diversity. One moment I may be helping an elderly patient rehab after a total knee replacement, the next helping a young athlete recover from an ACL reconstruction or helping a patient who has multiple sclerosis work on balance and gait. The field of PT is very broad which allows a therapist to draw from all the knowledge and skills they possess as opposed to a narrow focus. Most of all I enjoy helping ordinary people reach their goals of functioning to a capacity that meets or exceeds their expectations. My experience at Ortho Virginia has been very enriching and has helped me to focus on a career that fits my passion for exercise and body function.

I have been very fortunate to experience how fascinating the field of physical therapy can be. The focus on body mechanics/dysfunction, patient diversity, and ability to help others has me yearning for more knowledge in my quest to become a physical therapist. I believe my personal experience with other health care professions, knowledge of science, and passion for health care will all help me to become a successful physical therapist.
kyoon525 1 / 2  
Oct 27, 2012   #2
Hi there,
just a quick note. There seem to be a few missing commas and punctuations.

As I got older, it also contributed to one of my biggest interests, the human body.

Most of all, I enjoy helping ordinary people reach their goals of functioning to a capacity that meets or exceeds their expectations

There were a few more spread out, I'm sure if you're watching carefully for the character limit it will add up!

Other than that I really like the examples you used. Just needs a little cleaning up!

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