SIU Physical Therapist Assistant Program
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Apr 30th (Fri) | 6:00pm - 9:00pm CDT
May 1st (Sat) | 10:00am-1:00pm CDT
May 2nd (Sun) | 10:00am-1:00pm CDT
Founded in 1968, our program at SIUC was one of the first PTA programs in the nation to be developed
Operating as usual
Marshall Browning Hospital in Du Quoin has an opening for a full-time PTA and PRN PTA
Congratulations PTA Class of 2023!
Today, we feature a southern Illinois girl than ran off to Florida! Sarah (Wood) Jerrels did great in our PTA program and has become an excellent clinician with a heart to help. She was in the first class I (Tim Davis) taught! (Sorry about that-was still learning the ropes!🤪). Sarah has a beautiful family and doing well. Here she is……
Hello everyone! My name is Sarah Jerrells. I graduated from the SIU PTA program back in 2015 and had the privilege of being in Tim Davis’ first graduating class! After graduation, I started my first job at Herrin Hospital acute rehab as a PRN. I then got married and moved to Orlando, Florida for my husband’s job and began working at a SNF, ALF and Outpatient facility as a full time employee for 5 years. To further my career, I received my certification in LSVT BIG program to better service patients with Parkinson’s disease. Recently I have transitioned to a new SNF as a PRN and have taken on a new role as a mommy to my one year old daughter Ella. For fun, my family and I spend our weekends in Orlando going to Disney, the beach, and watching movies. I am very grateful for SIU’s PTA program and Tim Davis for the ability to do what I love and make a difference in the lives of my patients!
Proud of our students and their work this summer!
Today, we will post a little different. I recently realized that I failed to post a couple holiday posts😞
So, here it goes….
Happy Belated Juneteenth!
Happy Belated Fourth of July!
Both represent freedom that SIU and the United States value!
While, we cannot grant you another day off, we can provide the celebratory gestures!
Today, we are featuring a fairly recent SIU PTA grad in Sam Moskoff, (Sam Earl) when going through our program$. Sam worked very hard and has been asset anywhere she has been! She is the first person I heard use the word “adulting” after graduating college, referring to getting a job, managing all life’s responsibilities, and being accountable.
Her determination and positive outlook has helped all life has thrown at her (school, moving, cancer, etc). Here is Sam!
Hi! My name is Sam (Earl) Moskoff and I live in Herrin, IL with my husband and 2 dogs, Banks and Huck!
I started the PTA program right out of high school in 2015. I have been PRN at Herrin Hospital since 2017 and have also worked for BJC, select rehab, and have completed a travel assignment in California (the coolest thing ever!)
I spend most of my free time out on the lake with my husband, going to concerts, and playing with my pups.
I’m so thankful for SIU not only giving me my dream job but also giving me life long friends. SIU has the best PTA program and the best instructors!
Feature Friday! Today we are featuring a recent graduate, Bethany Meadows. Bethany is an outgoing, quick learning person. She mentored one of our students this year as a clinical instructor. Here she is……
Hey everyone!! My name is Bethany Meadows and I graduated 2 years ago from the SIU PTA program! I am from Herrin,IL where I am currently still living! I have the cutest black lab ever named Gunner! My goal with being a PTA is to work with special need kiddos, and I plan on going back to PT school eventually!
When I’m not working, I love to hunt, fish and pretty much do anything outdoors!
My favorite part of being a PTA is getting to help my patients do things that they weren’t able to do before starting therapy. My 2 favorite things to treat are kids and Neuro patients! I loved my time at SIU during the PTA program, and I would recommend the program to anyone who is interested in helping change people’s life!
We are back to more regular posts. One of our favorite things is our Featured Friday. This week we are recognizing Robyn Adams. She has accomplished many things in her career and continues to mentor SIU students, including her nieces Hunter and Tori Schullian.
Robyn (Houghlan) Adams, DPT, PT, L-ATC
Robyn started her educational journey in 1993 at Rend Lake College in Ina, IL completing her General Studies and playing softball for the Warriors. In 1995 Robyn transitioned to SIU-Carbondale completing the Physical Therapist Assistant program in 1997. She stayed at SIUC, receiving her Bachelor of Science in Physical Education with Athletic Training specialization in 1999, enjoying the fact that her “senior sport” for the AT program was Softball! Robyn then achieved her Master of Science in Physical Therapy from Washington University in St. Louis, MO in 2001 and her Doctorate of Physical Therapy from The Evidence in Motion Institute of Health Professions in Lexington, KY in 2016.
Robyn’s working career has predominantly been for SIH in a variety of locations and roles (moonlighting as a Per Diem PT with a few other Private Practice clinics to provide physical therapy services in the Home Health, Nursing Home, and Outpatient settings when not working for SIH). She began working for SIH as a Staff Physical Therapist and Athletic Trainer at the Rehab Unlimited Carbondale location in 2001. In May 2005, she made the transition to the Herrin Hospital Rehab Unlimited as a “Lead” Therapist and ultimately transitioning to the Supervisor and Manager roles in 2006 and 2016. While in the Supervisor/Manager roles, she has had responsibility for the day-day operations of the OP Rehab clinics at Fit For Work-Herrin, Cancer Institute-Carterville, West Frankfort, and Herrin Hospital. Robyn continues to use her Athletic Training license to assist in outreach coverage for all the SIH Sports Rehabilitation contracted schools on an as needed basis.
Robyn has continued to support the SIU PTA program through the coordination of Clinical Education internships in the OP Clinics she manages, as well as having her 2 nieces follow in their aunt’s career choice and completing the SIU PTA program. She was also able to continue to support the SIU Athletics-Softball program while her niece was a student athlete. Robyn and her husband Keenan live in Herrin and take advantage of exploring the beautiful scenery that Southern Illinois has to offer with their dog ZigZag.
Every year our second year students go out on two six-week clinical internships. They are about to finish their first one. Each student is assigned to a clinical instructor that works at the facility. It is a crucial to our students’ education. We would like to take time to thank them and recognize each one.
Taryn Pender (Joyner Therapy Services)
Miles Vaughn (SIH-Harrisburg)
Kayci Smith (VA- Marion)
Tammie Ricklefs (Barnes-Jewish Hospital)
Chris Walker (Heartland Regional Hospital)
Gayland L Jenkins (SIH-Marion)
Marcia Skinner (Orthopedic Institute)
Noah Stearns (Joyner Therapy Services -Harrisburg)
Lucas Alstat (Joyner Therapy Services -Marion)
Jennifer Hawkins (SIH-Franklin County Hospital)
Rich DeCarlo (Athletico- Elburn, IL)
Adam Johnson (SIH-Marion)
Linda Kleiboeker (Good Samaritan Hospital -Mt. Vernon)
Deidre Murphy (OSF Heart of Mary Medical Center -Urbana, IL)
Elizabeth Roberts (NovaCare-Benton, IL)
Took a little break after graduation and getting students into their internships.
Here is a post for a PTA job with Renewal Rehab Lebanon, IL
full time pta position open in Lebanon il. it is in a SNF setting. If anyone is interested they can email me at [email protected]
We honor those who have served this country and given all.
Thankful for those still with us.
Beautiful Campus Lake at SIU! Right behind our building the houses our PTA program! Dorms at Thompson Point on other side.
Debating about your college choice? Come be a Saluki!
No better way to wrap up the spring semester and celebrate being a Saluki and a PTA graduate!
Proud day to be a Saluki!
Crutch races today! 1) educate
2) gain respect
3) have fun!
Our second year students are working hard! Practical exam today, licensure prep last week, off to clinical internships in two weeks! We love these students! (Missing Tori and Jake in this pic)
Our first year students had a busy week as the semester winds down. Some attended River to River others the American Heart Association Heart Walk, and wheel chair races in between.
(Wheelchair races are a little bit of fun with education. Letting our students know the challenges a person in a wheelchair faces and how we can help)
This dedicated group of PTA students put in a long afternoon in Golconda,IL today at the River to River Relay finish line. The sun was out but the wind was cold. These students made the program proud today!
It was also nice to see so many PTA graduates who either ran or supported their loved ones at the finish line!
Kaybree Oxley (back row, far right) is a first year student on the SIU Club Volleyball team! Great job Kaybree and team!
PTA student Kaybree Oxley is on the SIU Club Volleyball team! Great job Kaybree and team!
Our second year PTA students gave massages (trained in manual therapy) to stressed dental hygiene students who are getting ready for their board exam
Great to be a Saluki!
Good morning and happy Friday! Today we are featuring 2012 SIU PTA graduate Dana Brewbaker. Another Saluki with a passion for our profession and to help others!
I graduated from SIU's PTA program in '12 with a desire and ambition to work in out-patient private practice. I have always wanted to understand movement, injury, rehab and longevity, so this treatment setting was a good fit for my interests. I am thankful to every teacher, therapist and patient I have worked with in the past. Everyone has taught me something that I can use to help the next person along my path.
I've always wanted to become the best therapist I can possibly be. In '18 I became a Fellow of Applied Functional Science through the Gray Institute. I am grateful to have been given the opportunity to learn a unique way of assessing human biomechanics, exercise prescription and manual techniques. I highly recommend this program and their ceu courses to anyone how wants to take their understanding of human biomechanics to the highest level.
My goals for the future are to continue to grow my manual therapy skills and continue to take on students to help grow the next generation of PTA's. I also have always wanted to one day own my own gym, online business or practice, where I can continue to provide 1:1 care to help people move without restriction and pain.
Carle Richland Memorial Hospital in Olney, IL has job openings for a full-time physical therapist and a full-time physical therapist assistant.
They also have PRN positions for a PT and PTA.
SIU PTA students had the opportunity to hear Brad Hagy speak about his journey. He’s so gracious and genuine in his conversation.
A spinal cord injury at 15 did not stop him from having a major impact on others and accomplishing his goals Brad has had his own business and has been an instructor at SIU for several years.
Brad is a great example of perseverance, determination, and looking at the positive.
Hello, we have not had a SIU featured graduate in a while, so we are posting on Motivational Monday.
This student was an excellent student and continues to help others in her career. She was taught by some of our former superstars (Jan, Rosie, Todd, Patsy, and Regina) and current superstar Julie. Tim worked in Du Quoin while she did her clinical internship. Her official clinical instructor was Debbie Hill PT (also a superstar) who is mom to Nick Hill our current SIU football coach. Small world of southern Illinois. Anyway, here is Denise (Millar) Reed!
Hi, my name is Denise (Millar) Reed. I graduated from HS in Grayville, IL in 1999, and entered into the 1 year Accelerated PTA program at SIU in the fall of '00. I had not applied early enough to be accepted into the Fall '99 program, so my 1st year at SIU consisted of taking all other required classes outside of the program that I could, which is why I was elligible for the Accelerated program. I believe there were 7 of us in the Accelerated program that year. We spent a lot of time together in the PTA classroom in Wham and became very close-knit, and had a lot of fun together. Our instructors were Jan, Todd, Julie and Rosie. Regina and Patsy were working in the clinic. After graduating, and passing the licensing exam, I continued my education at SIU to achieve my Bachelor's in Rehab Services. While continuing my education, I was able to receive an undergraduate assistantship to practice as a clinician in the on-campus therapy clinic, doing aquatic therapy in the Pulliam pool, as well as performing practicum assessments for PTA students. I enjoyed working and learning in the clinic alongside our instructors, and going for walks during lunch with Julie and Regina. They walked so fast, it was difficult to keep up with them! After graduating with my Bachelor's, my first job was at Memorial Hospital of Carbondale in the Inpatient dept, which had been one of my internship sites. I really enjoyed doing inpatient and had great coworkers. After marrying my college sweetheart, Thad, we moved to the Flora, IL area, where I had my first experience in SNF facilities, when I realized I had a passion for working in that setting. We moved to my husband's hometown, Martinsville, IL in 2007 and have been here ever since, contiuing work in area SNFs, and getting ready to begin some work in Assisted Living Facilities as well. We have 3 children, and I have been able to work some and stay home some, now working more as my kids are older. I absolutely loved my years at SIU and I highly recommend the PTA program for those interested!
Throwback Thursday (barely…at 11:33pm). Who do you know?
Wishing a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Tim Davis! The PTA program is so lucky to have you!!
Exercise and education are keys to PTA’s success
We love running into former students on campus, in clinics, and high school basketball games!
This is Sami (Minor) Nave. She was an awesome student and better person!
Joyner Therapy Services has an immediate opening for a PTA in Carmi and Harrisburg.
Today, several School of Health Sciences programs came together for Interprofessional Day, an event dedicated to helping students improve their practice through interdisciplinary knowledge. Communication Disorders and Sciences, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, and Physical Therapist Assistant students taught each other about the different scenarios and equipment they might encounter while working with patients. We have some truly amazing Salukis here!
Today, we will continue to honor the life Jessica (Rentfro) Barfknecht. We wanted to get her memorial information out last week, but we wanted to learn more about her life after graduation from her family.
Jessica received multiple degrees at SIU leading her to a successful career in healthcare. We are saddened it ended way too soon. Jessica’s mother was able to give us more information about her love for her family (this very much included her dogs that she cared for and trained). Here is a little more about Jessica.
Jessica loved her dogs and enjoyed showing them all over the country. She even showed them at the Westminister Dog Show a couple of time. While finishing her bachelors degree, Jessica worked in physical therapy. Jessica worked hard to reach her educational goals. She obtained her Masters Degree in Health Care Administration from SIU and was working as a case manager for Humana Insurance.
Obituary information for Jessica (Rentfro) Barfknecht View Jessica (Rentfro) Barfknecht's obituary, contribute to their memorial, see their funeral service details, and more.
We were saddened to hear about the passing of Jessica (Rentfro) Barfknecht. Jessica was a 2007 graduate of the SIU PTA program. Our sincerest condolences go out to her family and friends. The services to honor Jessica were last week, but here is a little about her in her obituary.
Jessica (Rentfro) Barfknecht Obituary - Visitation & Funeral Information View Jessica (Rentfro) Barfknecht's obituary, contribute to their memorial, see their funeral service details, and more.
Good luck to Tori Schullian (PTA/exercise science) and all of our Saluki softball players!
📍 Fort Myers, FL
Game 1 | LIU
Game 2 | FGCU
We are getting back on track with our schedule. Today we are happy to feature SIU PTA graduate Kimberly Parker! Here is a little about her
I am a 1983 graduate of the Southern Illinois University Physical Therapist Assistant program. Grateful to have received my education from Mr Ted Okita, along with Dale, Jan, Ed & Debbie. My first job was with Tri-County Special Education District, Murphysboro, IL. Grateful for the experience working with this pediatric population, along with fellow SIU PTA alum & friend, Cindy Presley. My next PTA/L employment experience was with Carle Foundation Hospital Therapy Services @ the Carbondale Clinic. ( Ted Okita worked with us part-time. I was still in awe of him as a co-worker. Enjoyed our messages on FB many years later. Enjoy being in touch with Jan, also). I transferred to Champaign/Urbana to work in Long-Term care, followed by rotations in Out-Patient, Orthopedic, Cardiac, Wound Care, Neurology, In-Patient, & student supervision. Grateful for the many conferences/seminars this experience provided. I value the experience, continued education, & staff/interdisciplinary relationships. I also worked for Professional Therapy Services-Belleville, IL as they contracted with long-term facilities.
I have 4 children: Nicolas, Andrew, Jordan, & Ariel.
I love spending time with them, traveling, & caring for our pets.
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