Monday, October 10, 2016

5 Weeks Now

I have been a PT, DPT for five weeks now and the time has flown by. I feel like I was in school ages ago but really I graduated just less than two months ago. I have seen a variety of patients thus far and I feel like I want more tools in my tool kit. I'm hungry to keep learning! This drive is something I never want to let die. I am now technically a PT, I made it to my goal but in reality it takes a career of education to create a PT. So I will keep learning and reading so I can be the best PT that I can be.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

DPT: So Glad

School at times felt like it was impossible. I was pushed beyond my limit at times. I graduated about 6 weeks ago and I am coming up on completing 3 weeks in the clinic. If I had to simply state how I feel so far I would say I am so glad. It has been so fun coming out of school and getting my own caseload. It almost feels weird not to have a CI standing behind me making sure I'm doing things correctly. During my internships I wondered from time to time "is PT right for me". And now that a can say with confidence becoming a physical therapist was the right decision. I'm so glad I pushed through the long nights and early mornings of studying because I am loving my new found role as a physical therapist. I'm so glad I made my way through.

Friday, August 5, 2016

NPTE: Quick Update

I passed the NPTE! I recently got my score back and got a 679. Everything for school is done and grades are due tonight. All that is left is graduate and get working. I am so grateful that I have had the opportunity to go to physical therapy school. It has been one of the toughest things I have ever done but now that I am done I am so glad I did it.

Friday, July 22, 2016

NPTE: Waiting for the Score

I took the NPTE and I would say it was very tough. By no means did I feel like I totally failed but on the other hand I don't feel all that confident that I passed. I am feeling like it could go either way. I am just crossing my fingers I get that 600. When all is said and done pretty much nobody cares what you scored (except maybe some classmates). As I have talked to different folk about jobs they really don't care what your GPA is, what color cords you graduated with, or your NPTE score. They seem to care about one thing, and one thing only... Will you have a valid license to practice as a PT. In other words did you graduate and pass the NPTE. Not where did you graduate. Really when it comes down to it you are there to make money for them and that has nothing to do with grades or test scores. For now all I can do is just wait for that NPTE score to come and pray it brings good news.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

NPTE: How I'm Doing It

So I am taking the NPTE on July 19. It is just around the corner. I don't know if what I am doing to prepare is effective or going to push me over that 600 mark but I will to share with you how I'm doing it. I'll break it down into sort of a timeline.

November: I bought the National Physical Therapy Examination Review & Study Guide by TherapyEd. It comes with 3 practice exams and as far as the content in the book it seems pretty comprehensive.

January: At this point I am thinking the NPTE is about seven months away why don't I just see where I am at. So I took one the the TherapyEd exams. I had not studied at all (aside from just being in PT school) and pulled off a 60%.

January-May: During this time period I was on internship and had very good intentions if starting to lightly study for the NPTE but it did not happen as much as I was hoping. I spent maybe an hour or two a week reviewing.

April: I took a NPTE prep class put out by TherapyEd. The class for the most part was pretty good and they had some pretty good study tips. I started reading and studying "positive self talk" methods, believe it or not I feel this has been the best thing I have done. I would catch myself saying I can't pass the NPTE but with positive self talk and imagery I have begun to over come my fears and doubts. There is honestly no reason why I can't beat the NPTE!

May: The last of my internships ended and so I took another TherapyEd practice exam and scored a 67%.  I studied for the next two weeks and take another TherapyEd exam (This time the "practice" exam was provided/required by my school) As required by the school I needed to score a 60% in order to pass the schools standards and I pulled off a 65%.

June: I have been trying to study hard and on my study plan scheduled to take the PEAT 6 weeks before the test and I scored a 616/800.

July: Pass the NPTE on the 19th ;-)

August: Graduate on the 13th and start working! 

For the most part I have studied out of the TherapyEd (2015 ed.) book and I have made hundreds of flash cards with info about every PT subject under the sun. I try to take some cards with me everywhere and anytime I have a free second I pull out my cards (heck, even just a quick red light I'll do a couple cards).

Its a bit hard to see but I included a picture of my study schedule below. I try to spend anywhere from an hour to four hours a day studying. I elected to take every Sunday off because I am yet to study on Sunday throughout PT school (Keep the Sabbath Day Holy). So far I should be on track to pass the NPTE according to my PEAT score and the stats put out by the FSBPT in regards to the PEAT (See image below).

I know the PEAT is another hundred bucks or so but in my opinion it was worth it to get a better idea of where I am at in my progress toward passing the NPTE. The TherapyEd exams just don't give you an actual score where the PEAT actually tells you whether or not you would have passed. What the hay, whats another hundred bucks after the thousands you just spent on PT school.

If you have any questions or comments in regard to this post or anything else let me know!
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Monday, June 13, 2016

NPTE: It's Coming

The count down is on... literally, I am looking at the count down until I take the NPTE. The big kahuna! The Super Bowl of PT school! As I write this I am taking the test in 35 days 12 hours 41 minutes and 13 seconds. I swear the count down is moving faster than it should. As the late L. Tom Perry stated "if ye are prepared, ye shall not fear". I am doing my best to be prepared for this thing but it is not easy. What should I look at, what should I read. Should I use flash cards. Should I take practice tests... Well I am by no means an expert but I will share with you how I am studying.
First I took a practice test cold from TherapyEd and scored a mean 60% (this was 6 months ago). I just wanted to see where I am at. Since then I did not do much studying until about 4 weeks ago and I started studying and trying to prepare according to my weaknesses based on that TherapyEd test. So over the last few weeks I have taken three more practice tests of which I have scored a 64%, 65%, and a 67%.

I am starting to get nervous because that test in coming faster than I could have expected. Over the next 35 days I have big plans to study hard but it is easy said than done. I still have to do all of my class work in the last semester of school (in Texas you can take the boards in your last semester). I don't know how everything is going to pan out but there is one thing I do know... I am going to work my tail of between now and July 19th. No matter how hard it gets, I'm going to make it!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Nothing to do but move forward

Someone or something will get in your way as your push toward your goals. How you react is up to you. You cannot control what others say or do but what is in your control is your reaction. Winston Churchill stated it perfectly, "if you are going through hell, keep going". The fact of the matter is it does not matter what stage of life you are in you will go through hell. Applying for PT school and getting rejected was awful. Making it through PT school in many ways has been ridiculously hard. Whether it is a friend, a family member, a professor, a clinical instructor, or even an institution pushing you down; don't let them keep you down. When you get knocked down it sometimes takes a minute to get up but get up and brush it off. 

Re-evaluate and re-establish your goals and go for them. I have recently come off of an experience where I was told I will never make it. I was told I will not be successful PT. This person day in and day out for months would slowly tear me down. I started to believe them; I'm not good enough. I won't pass my boards. I'll never be a successful PT.

The only thing I can do is move forward and prove them wrong. Not only will I be a good PT but I will be a great PT. At the end of the day, I have goals and I must keep moving forward. Remember there are detractors but there are those who have a hand extended out to help you up.

When you get knocked down, get back up, and keep moving forward. 

Saturday, April 16, 2016

See the Light

Internship sounded so great. Just go to work, come home and relax. No homework, no tests, or assignments; It sounded so wonderful. Nothing in PT school turns out to be easy. I'm learning the hard way. I have just two weeks left of my final internship and I just can't wait. On my internship before this one I was commuting from Austin to San Antonio and it was rough. Getting up a 4 am to drive to SA and then work 8-9 hours and drive home often getting home after 8 pm. It felt like I did not have time for anything, wait if felt like that because it was reality. On my current internship the drive is much better, just an hour each way, but I spend hours every evening and weekend seeking new treatment ideas and fresh exercises. The demand of preparation is taking a toll and with just a couple more weeks left I see the light. PT school is just not easy, whether it is class work or on internship the demand never ends but I still believe it will be worth it.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Internship II

Getting out of the classroom and working with real people! Need I say more? Not having my nose in the books and having my hands on people who need help is the best feeling in the world. Folks who are in pain or discomfort who feel relief because of the things I do with them is so gratifying. Being on this rotation has helped me re-realize why I am becoming a PT... To help others. Turns out its really fun to do something and provide relief. I have been able to try my some of my manual therapy skills as well as learn new techniques from my CI. As I finish my last two weeks of this internship, I will be sad to leave but onward and upward to the next internship, my third and final. The thought of graduation is surreal and I can see a little light at the end of the tunnel. A glimmer of light that gets brighter and brighter as I approach August 13, 2016. As for now I'll continue to create a PT one day at a time.