Lora John is combining her passion for physical therapy with her interest in leadership opportunities as an ambassador for the American Physical Therapy Association.
The APTA appointed John, a student in Clarkson University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program, as a Core Ambassador for the 2013-2014 academic year.
John will serve as a liaison between the APTA and students enrolled in 33 DPT and Physical Therapy Assistant (PTA) programs across New York State; she is the only ambassador in the state. She will communicate information from the APTA’s Student Assembly Board of Directors to students in New York’s programs, and in turn voice those students’ concerns to the APTA.
In addition, John will travel to physical therapy schools in New York to make APTA presentations. She will also perform at least one physical therapy advocacy project and make a legislative visit at the state or national level.
“I really want to further the profession and I want to help people, not just help my patients – that’s what I’m going to school for, but to help others in the profession,” John said. “I can use some of the skills and some of the things that interest me to help inspire and put the fire under other people to say ‘Hey there’s good things you bring to the table too. Run With that. You can help the profession.’”
John said Clarkson’s DPT program encouraged her to seek leadership opportunities beyond her classes.
“Clarkson has allowed me to further develop those skills,” she said. “It makes me want to give back.”
Leslie Russek, an associate professor in Clarkson’s DPT program, praised John’s leadership skills and initiative.
“She’s incredibly considerate. She consistently goes above and beyond. She’ll take extra time to work with students who are struggling,” Russek said. “She really believes in the value of what she’s doing; she’s committed to the patients and the population that we serve.”