Foundation Announces 2017 Recipients of Postprofessional Doctoral Scholarships and Fellowship Totaling $310,000

Categories: Press Releases

ALEXANDRIA, VA, July 7, 2017 – The Foundation for Physical Therapy Board of Trustees recently awarded a total of $310,000 in Promotion of Doctoral Studies (PODS) I & II Scholarships and a New Investigator Fellowship Training Initiative (NIFTI) to a total of 20 physical therapists.

“After a rigorous and much thought out peer-review process, we are excited to announce this year’s PODS and NIFTI funding recipients,” said Foundation Board of Trustees President Edelle Field-Fote, PT, PhD, FAPTA. “As we continue to foster innovation in physical therapy research and fulfill our mission of developing the next generations of researchers, we are certain that these researchers will continue to support effective therapeutic interventions and methods and help propel the profession forward. We cannot wait to follow their success.”

As part of its post-professional Doctoral Opportunities for Clinicians and Scholarships (DOCS) program to fund the most highly-qualified doctoral and post-doctoral students preparing for research careers, the Foundation awards PODS I Scholarships of $7,500 each year to physical therapists or physical therapist assistants who have completed at least two full semesters or three full quarters of their coursework toward a post professional doctoral degree. PODS II Scholarships of up to $15,000 each are awarded to physical therapists or physical therapist assistants who have been formally admitted to post-professional doctoral candidacy.

Congratulations to the 2017 PODS I Scholarship recipients: Lindsey Brown, BS, DPT, Ohio State University; Jacob J. Capin, BS, MS, DPT, University of Delaware; Timothy G. Eckard, BS, DPT, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Jessica E. Galgiani, BS, MS, DPT, University of Delaware; Kelly A. Hawkins, BS, DPT, University of Florida; Joshua K. Johnson, PT, DPT, ATC, University of Utah; Matthew Miller, BS, DPT, University of Colorado-Denver; Anne Palermo, DPT, University of Miami; Lauren K. Sara, PT, DPT, OCS; Marquette University; and Andrew L. Sprague, BS, MS, DPT, University of Delaware.

Jacob J. Capin, BS, MS, DPT, University of Delaware, has been named as the recipient of the VCU-Marquette Challenge Award for exceptional achievement within a PODS application. This award was made possible by the 2016-2017 VCU-Marquette Challenge. The Marquette Challenge is the signature annual fundraising initiative of the Foundation, raising more funds each year than any other Foundation activity. The Challenge is coordinated and carried out by physical therapist and physical therapist assistant students across the country. Students organize grassroots fundraisers on their campuses and in their local communities that raise awareness for and benefit the Foundation for Physical Therapy.  Since its inception, the Challenge has raised over $3 million and has funded over 22 research grants and scholarships.

Anne Palermo, DPT, University of Miami, is the recipient of the 2017 Patricia Leahy Award for her outstanding application in post-professional studies within neurology. This award is given in memory of APTA Section on Neurology member, accomplished physical therapist, and Foundation Doctoral Training Research Grant recipient, Patricia Leahy, PT, MS, NCS. Leahy was a professor at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia and was one of the first physical therapists ever to receive the Neurologic Certified Specialist certification. This scholarship is generously supported by the Neurology Section Endowment Fund.

Timothy G. Eckard, BS, DPT, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has been named the Viva J. Erickson Award recipient, for exceptional academic and leadership achievement within a PODS I application in honor of Viva J. Erickson, PT, an accomplished physical therapist and leader within APTA.

All remaining PODS I Scholarships are supported through the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) Scholarship Fund.

The 2017 PODS II Scholarship recipients are: Stephen A. Antos, PT, DPT, Northwestern University; Daniel Bittel, BS, DPT, Washington University in St. Louis; Katie A. Butera, DPT; University of Florida; Timothy D. Faw, PT, DPT, NCS, The Ohio State University; Jason R. Falvey, DPT, GCS, University of Colorado – Anschutz Medical Campus; Jody A. Feld, MPT, DPT, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Allison Gustavson (Kosir), BS, DPT, University of Colorado – Anschutz Medical Campus; Ilana Levin, PT, DPT, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and Laura E. Stanley, PT, DPT, SCS, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Laura E. Stanley, PT, DPT, SCS, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, is the recipient of the 2017 Margaret L. Moore Award in honor or Margaret L. Moore, PT, Ed.D., FAPTA, a physical therapist, recipient of multiple APTA awards, and Foundation alumna.

Timothy D. Faw, PT, DPT, NCS, The Ohio State University, is the recipient of the 2017 Mary Lou Barnes Award for his outstanding PODS II application in postprofessional studies within neurology. This award is given in honor of APTA Section on Neurology member and accomplished physical therapist Mary Lou Barnes, PT, FAPTA. Barnes was the founding director of the West Virginia University physical therapy program and served as chair of Georgia State University’s program. During her terms, both programs achieved national recognition. This scholarship is generously supported by Neurology Section Endowment Fund.

Daniel Bittel, BS, DPT, Washington University in St. Louis, is the recipient of the 2017 Karen St. John Award in honor of Karen St. John, a physical therapist, educator, and inspiration for the establishment of the St. John Family Foundation.

The Neurology Section also helped fund scholarships to Katie A. Butera, DPT, and Jody A. Feld, MPT, DPT. 

All remaining PODS II funding were made possible through the APTA Scholarship Fund.

The $100,000 New Investigator Fellowship Training Initiative (NIFTI) was awarded to Elizabeth Wellsandt, PT, DPT, PhD, OCS, of the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Her fellowship will include a research training experience entitled “Role of Physical Activity in Post-Traumatic Osteoarthritis.” She will be under the mentorship of Kaleb Michaud, PhD, associate professor in the Division of Rheumatology and Immunology in the department of Internal Medicine at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and Yvonne Golightly, PhD, assistant professor in the Department of Epidemiology in the Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. 

This award was made possible through the APTA Supporting the Profession Fund and the APTA Scholarship Fund.

The NIFTI supports post-professional, doctorally prepared physical therapists as they begin their research careers. It is designed to accommodate both traditional postdoctoral and new faculty applicants for a closely mentored research experience.

About The Foundation for Physical Therapy

The Foundation for Physical Therapy was established in 1979 as a national, independent nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality and delivery of physical therapy care by providing support for scientifically based and clinically relevant physical therapy research and doctoral scholarships and fellowships.

Over the last 37 years, the Foundation has awarded more than $17 million in research grants, fellowships, and postprofessional doctoral scholarships to more than 590 emerging scientists. Foundation-funded researchers have gone on to receive an estimated $753 million in external funding from the National Institutes of Health and other sources. Many of today’s leading and emerging physical therapist researchers, clinicians, and academicians began their careers with a grant or scholarship from the Foundation.

Contributions to the Foundation for Physical Therapy are tax-deductible and can be made online at Foundation4PT.org or sent to its headquarters at 1111 N Fairfax St, Alexandria, VA 22314.

To learn more, visit Foundation4pt.org.

For more information, e-mail info@foundation4pt.org or call 800/875-1378.