Elon holds Commencement for DPT candidates

Thirty-nine candidates in Elon University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program received their degrees on Dec. 12, 2010, in an afternoon ceremony that featured an address from the creator of Evidence in Motion, a highly regarded education and business practice consultation company within the physical therapy profession.

Laurence N. Benz, founder and CEO of PT Development LLC, told DPT graduates to “pass the like-ability” test with their clients and to use their patients’ successes as fuel for their own career.

Laurence N. Benz, founder and CEO of PT Development LLC and the man behind Evidence in Motion, offered the graduates three bits of advice as they embark on their careers: Pass the “like-ability” test with clients, remember that your source of joy is in helping others, and “put your heroes in front of you” via photos and notes to remind yourself each day of the clients you help.

“You are entering this profession at the best time in history,” said Benz, who shared with his audience the opportunities he sees for new therapists as they relate to the rising population of older Americans and the cost benefits of physical therapy at a time when medical expenses are increasing. “Patients won’t remember your name … but they will remember the way you make them feel.”

Family and friends of the doctoral candidates filled Whitley Auditorium for the ceremony that ended with a charge to graduates from Elon University President Leo M. Lambert. Lambert reminded the future therapists that they carry with them the university’s core values, including a commitment to excellence, a passion for learning, personal integrity, respect for human differences and an ethic of service.

The ceremony also allowed program faculty to honor several current students, a clinical instructor at Alamance Regional Medical Center and an outstanding program alumnus.

Thirty-nine candidates for the Doctor of Physical Therapy received degrees in a Dec. 12, 2010, afternoon ceremony in Whitley Auditorium.

The honorees:

Outstanding Student Award: Jennifer M. Roberts
Outstanding Clinical Performance Award: Tiffany Nikole Adams, Kathleen Dawn Lovell
Outstanding Research Award: Dacia Haymore Benton, D. Scott Tanner, Miranda Ludtke Garvin and Michael David Bourassa
Outstanding Clinical Instructor Award: J. Gray Carpenter
Outstanding Alumni Award: Rafael Escamilla

Escamilla was the inaugural recipient of the Outstanding Alumni Award. In his brief acceptance remarks, the director of research at The Andrews-Paulos Research and Education Institute in Florida congratulated the doctoral candidates for their hard work over the three years of their Elon studies.

“Go out into the community and make a difference,” Escamilla told them. “Never lose your passion for physical therapy.”

Associate Dean Elizabeth Rogers presents Rafael Escamilla G’02 with the inaugural Distinguished Alumnus Award.

Candidates for the Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree

Tiffany Nikole Adams
B.S.Ed., University of Virginia

Adam Webster Autry
B.S., Campbell University

Dacia Haymore Benton
B.S., Appalachian State University

Michael David Bourassa
B.S., California State University at Chico

Jonathan Daniel Calloway
B.S., East Tennessee State University

Francis Charity Carwile
B.S., Liberty University

Elon University President Leo M. Lambert gave the charge to graduates to conclude the Commencement ceremony.

Laura M. Corriher
B.S., Western Carolina University

Anna Helen Craddock
B.A., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Angela Rachel Dargis
B.S., University of Alaska at Anchorage

Ashley Elizabeth Davis
B.A., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Tiffany N. DeLoatch
B.S., Averett University

Rachel Schryer Dirito
B.S., North Carolina State University; M.P.H., The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

Miranda Ludtke Garvin
B.S., Murray State University

Lura Blair Harrison
B.A., The University of North Carolina at Wilmington

Anna Brittany Holcomb
B.A., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Amanda Cope Hooper
B.S., Western Carolina University

Mara Van Heukelem Hutton
B.A., Calvin College

Allison Marie Lewis
B.A., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Kathleen Dawn Lovell
B.S., Bridgewater College

Heather H. McLaughlin
B.A., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Amie Garner Miles
B.S., Furman University

Hilary Leigh Miller
B.S., Alma College

Heather Nemecek
B.S., Texas Woman’s University

Jennifer Lee Norman
B.S., Lipscomb University

Randolph Scott Pallas, Jr.
B.S., The University of Arizona

Robert Taylor Powell
B.S., Elon University

Jennifer M. Roberts
B.S.E., Millersville University

Kevin Glen Saldanha
B.S., North Carolina State University

Ashley Ann Sellers
B.S., The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

Lindsey Louise Sharpe
B.A., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Julia DeVier-Scott Skinner
B.S., Roanoke College

Lorraine R. Snyder
B.S. Richard Stockton College of New Jersey; B.S., Rutgers University

Tara Elizabeth Stewart
B.S., Seattle Pacific University

D. Scott Tanner
B.S., Clarion University of Pennsylvania

Davis Banks Templeton
B.A., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Kara Michelle Thompson
B.S., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Dana F. Tischler
B.S., Ithaca College; M.S., George Washington University

Whitney L. Ward
B.A., The University of North Carolina at Wilmington

Veronica Alexandra Zych
B.S., Guilford College