APTA Is the Key
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Mentors are a gift in life and I have been fortunate to thank key people who guide in my journey as a clinician, academician, and researcher.
I collaborate with my colleagues to share ideas, brainstorm strategies, and innovate in creative ways.
APTA is the key foundation and my platform where I springboard ideas, my private practice, best pedagogical practices, and heart-to-heart connections with friends across the country.
As a steadfast member since I graduated from physical therapy school, I have been resourced through APTA during the HIV epidemic and garnered support through oncology, research, women's health, and private practice academies. As a result, I was able to initiate an HIV rehabilitation SIG, serve as research chair of our section for over a decade, and serve on the EDGE Task Force working with a great team to publish systematic reviews. In January we published our first HIV special issue in Rehabilitation Oncology.
Witnessing the growth of our profession through the decades has been gratifying.
As a mentor to my students at Stockton University and a visiting professor at the University of Witwatersrand through a Fulbright Scholarship in South Africa, I encourage participation in both APTA and World Confederation for Physical Therapy and other associations to foster interprofessional practice.
My passion is to serve and connect globally and when grounded in an organization with purpose to deeply serve humanity, it aligns with my personal mission to uphold human dignity, regardless of the context.
As a clinician in global settings, I am buoyed by the members of APTA who connect and support me through these treks. At the heart of the matter, my students bring great joy to me as they interrogate questions, challenge various issues, and grapple with an ever- changing health care system. I assure them that our association is a place to be resourced, supported, and grow multidimensionally.
As a researcher in integrative health practices for chronic disease, including HIV and cancer survivorship and wellness coaching for burnout prevention, our graduate students as coauthors have presented on these topics for state chapter meetings, APTA National Student Conclave, and Combined Sections Meeting.
To witness students engaged in APTA activities, conferences, and community service is my commitment and legacy to our profession. This is another example of sustaining the heart of creativity, for if we teach engagement, leadership, and self-care in health care professional training through our association, we can better advocate and serve patients in the long trajectory of health care delivery.
Mary Lou Galantino, PT, MS, PhD, MSCE, FAPTA, is a practicing clinician in Wilmington, Delaware and a faculty member at Stockton University and adjunct scholar at University of Pennsylvania. You can connect with Mary Lou via email.
View more APTA love stories. 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.