The following is an interview from when Allison was a student in the Physical Therapy Program at Midwestern University.
As an avid athlete, Allison grew up in the Seattle area playing hockey, softball, and soccer. She played hockey throughout her undergraduate years earning several honors for her play on the ice. Now, as a busy student studying physical therapy on the Downers Grove Campus of Midwestern University, Allison is fulfilling her dream of combining her passion for athletics with her desire to help others.
"There are many reasons I wanted to work in healthcare. I've been involved in sports my whole life and I have always been interested in athletics and elite performance," she said. "I love working with people and I'm really looking forward to becoming a physical therapist so I can help people."
Allison is earning a Doctor of Physical Therapy (D.P.T.) degree and through both classroom and clinical educational opportunities is learning to evaluate and provide care to people of all ages. As a physical therapist, she will help individuals develop, maintain, and restore maximum movement and function. Physical therapy has many specialties and therapists practice in a wide variety of settings, such as outpatient clinics, rehabilitation facilities, extended care facilities, private homes, education and research centers, schools, workplaces, and sports training facilities.
Not surprisingly, it was during her active childhood that Allison first became interested in the profession. "In ninth grade I sprained my ankle and went to a physical therapist at an outpatient clinic and I really liked it. It just seemed like an interesting field. I realized I liked the idea of knowing what's going on inside your body," she said.
While on campus, Allison has found a supportive environment in which to expand her knowledge and test her emerging skills. "I love the campus and the people," she said. "Being a student at Midwestern University is definitely hard work and fast-paced, but it's not competitive here. Everyone just wants to help each other and in that aspect it is just really welcoming. People study together and share ideas."
One of the things she remembers most about her first year at Midwestern University is learning to evaluate patients. "During the winter quarter, we have a simulated clinic where actors play our patients," she said. "It's a really great experience because it lets you bring all the information you've learned so far and synthesize it."
Being a student at Midwestern University is definitely hard work and fast-paced, but it's not competitive here. Everyone just wants to help each other and in that aspect it is just really welcoming. People study together and share ideas."
— Allison Rushing, D.P.T., Class of 2012
And while it is still early in her studies, Allison is confident in her growing abilities. "I think I'll definitely be well-prepared to be a physical therapist. I'd recommend this school to everyone because in addition to being strong academically, it's clinically based with a lot of hands-on learning," she said. "I think every quarter I expand my knowledge base."
Allison Rushing, D.P.T., graduated in 2012 from the Physical Therapy Program on the Downers Grove Campus of Midwestern University.