Gail Bachman, Graduate
Why should PTs and PT students become APTA members?
When I was a 1st year DPT student, the APTA adopted a new vision for the profession of physical therapy “Transforming society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience”. This seemed incredibly daunting to me as a student. Do I know enough to “optimize movement”? Is it in my power to “improve the human experience”? How can I “transform society”?
Now just a few years later, I truly believe that every PT and PTA has the ability to fulfill this vision statement on a professional and organizational level. Being an APTA member has provided me with the resources, the continuing education, the networking opportunities, and most importantly the professional advocacy opportunities to advance my career and the profession as a whole.
Every individual will have a different reason for why they want to join the APTA but I think it all comes back to professional responsibility. Whether you are a member or not, the APTA and its components are constantly working for your right to treat patients at the top of your professional scope of practice, and to be appropriately reimbursed for your services. By being a member, you support these efforts, and can be a part of the transformative change within our health care system.
How do I personally benefit as an APTA member?
My APTA membership has benefited me immensely both professionally and personally.
Professionally, I have gained multiple opportunities on a local, state and national level to serve on various committees and in leadership positions. Even as a student, I was able to get involved in the APTA Student Assembly to serve in national and statewide roles. I am fairly certain my involvement in these roles is what landed me my first job – my dream job working in a large Inpatient Rehab Facility with an emphasis on the neurological population.
As an early career PT, I have continued to stay involved and have continued to learn and grow from my APTA-affiliated roles and responsibilities. I have also developed an amazing group of colleagues and friends who share the same passion for the PT profession and inspire me to be a better health care provider and educator!