Penn College’s first physical therapist assistant grads 100% employed
WILLIAMSPORT – The first graduating class of Pennsylvania College of Technology’s physical therapist assistant major not only achieved a 100% first-attempt pass rate on the national certification exam for physical therapist assistants, but the graduates have subsequently achieved 100% employment in their chosen field.
All Class of 2018 graduates who sought employment are employed as physical therapist assistants. They are working in hospitals, long-term care facilities and outpatient centers across Pennsylvania and as far south as North Carolina.
“Joining the physical therapist assistant program at Penn College was one of the greatest decisions of my academic career,” said Allison E. Stugart, who graduated in 2018 and is a certified physical therapist assistant for Select Physical Therapy in Harrisburg. “You will not find a harder-working group of faculty and professors, all dedicated to your success.”
Physical therapist assistants are educated in physical therapy interventions and are prepared to work under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist. They assist individuals of all ages whose lives have been impacted by injury or illness.
In Penn College’s associate degree physical therapist assistant major, hands-on learning takes place in a well-equipped, on-campus laboratory where students practice skills and interventions. In addition, students attend clinical education experiences at regional facilities that offer physical therapy services.
Employment opportunities for PTA program graduates are strong, with PTA listed as a “high-priority occupation” by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry and the Central Workforce Development Area. High-priority occupations are in demand by employers, have higher skill needs and are most likely to provide family-sustaining wages.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the nationwide demand for physical therapists and physical therapist assistants will increase in response to the health needs of an aging population, particularly the large baby-boom generation.
According to the Population Reference Bureau, Pennsylvania has the fourth-greatest number of individuals who are age 65 and older, ranking behind only California, Florida and New York.