My Professional Fire Burned Bright
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On January 22, 2019, I traveled from New York to Washington DC for APTA’s Combined Sections Meeting (CSM), expectant and excited that I was going to be exposed to the best leaders in the physical therapy profession. Little did I know that I would fall head over heels in love with my chosen profession all over again.
The 8-hour drive was only the beginning of my adventure. When I first arrived, I was overcome by the number of professionals and students who surrounded me. I was just humbled to be present.
During CSM, I attended a variety of lectures, explored the massive exhibit hall, went to section meetings, saw one of my favorite professors give a talk, and mixed and mingled with fellow conference goers at evening events.
Throughout my conference experience I interacted with students and professionals from all over the globe. It was evident to me that the connections I was making and the networks I was forming would all maximize my reach within this profession today and in the future.
I woke up on the final day of the conference feeling slightly under the weather, and it wasn’t because of my previous night’s plans. I found myself feeling sad and a little down because this amazing experience was coming to an end. The thought of leaving Washington was heartbreaking and leaving felt a little daunting. Would I maintain my level of excitement? Would I keep in touch with everyone I’d just met? Would my desire to get and stay involved and engaged remain when I got back to school? The questions kept churning.
Funny enough, I hadn’t even made it home before I got my first message from a fellow student leader who wanted to collaborate on a project to enhance student involvement. My anxiety eased. My #PTFam and my pride for our profession would in fact continue, and my fire for our profession would burn bright.
Megan Sliski, SPT, is president of the New York chapter SSIG. You can connect with Megan on Twitter at @MeganSliski.
Want to share your APTA love story? Submit it here! Haven't had such an experience or moment? We encourage you to contact Kaylee Pobocik, SPT, Director of Membership, APTA Student Assembly Board of Directors to discover APTA value and opportunities.