SOMERSET – Graduates of the Somerset Community College Physical Therapist Assistant Program for 2016 have achieved a 100 percent first-attempt pass rate on the national certification examination.
“I am very proud of this group and all they have accomplished,” said program clinical coordinator Dr. Steve Hammons. “I look forward to seeing what the future holds for each one of them as they continue to develop their clinical skills.”
This is the ninth year, out of the past 10, that the program’s graduates have achieved the milestone. For the third time in the program’s history, a student received the highest possible score of 800. Travis Dills of Somerset joins graduates Bethany Smahaj (2013) and Samantha Grubb (2014) in achieving that score, said PTA Program Director Dr. Ron Meade.
Several of the 2016 graduates have been recognized locally, statewide and nationally. Travis Dills was named the American Physical Therapy Association Outstanding Student for the Academy of Geriatric Physical Therapy and the Orthopaedic Section, and was named the recipient of the Mary McMillan Scholarship Award. Dills was also named to the Kentucky Physical Therapy Association’s All-Academic Team, along with classmate Hannah McAlpin of Somerset.
Two graduates, Travis Dills and Jason Fox, completed the program with perfect 4.0 grade point averages. Fox received SCC’s top award for academic excellence at the college’s Honors Night.
The class also participated in the winning effort in the 2015 Marquette Challenge, a national fundraiser for physical therapy research, with the program being named “Outstanding PTA Program” by the Foundation for Physical Therapy.
Several of the 2016 graduates plan to further their education by pursuing advanced degrees.
“We are beginning to see more students who ultimately wish to become physical therapists begin that journey here at SCC,” said Meade. “Our PTA graduates have been admitted to doctoral programs at the University of Kentucky, Western Kentucky University and the University of Findlay in recent years. The SCC PTA Program helps to provide a strong foundation for that experience.”
2016 PTA Program graduates include: Rachel Claborn, Albany; Travis Dills, Somerset; Whitney Ellison McDaniel, Corbin; Jason Fox, Somerset; Rebecca Franks, Cumberland; Laura Groce, Albany; Jacob Gross, Science Hill; Ashley Hopper, Corbin; Hannah Haycraft, Berea; Chris Kent, Campbellsville; Hannah McAlpin, Somerset; Olivia Pitcock, Glasgow; Logan Skipworth, Burkesville; Breanna Warner, Hustonville; Whitney West, Eubank; Rick Winstead, Science Hill; and Jeffrey Ybañez, Somerset.
To learn more about SCC’s Physical Therapist Assistant program, contact program director Dr. Ron Meade at [email protected]