Division hosts 2015 Academic Convocation and White Coat Ceremony

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BY YASMINE PEZESHKPOUR MCM ’17

On Thursday, Aug. 27, the USC Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy gathered on the Broad Lawn on USC’s Health Sciences Campus for the 2015 Academic Convocation and White Coat Ceremony.

The ceremony opened with an address by associate dean and division chair Dr. James Gordon, who warmly welcomed the 128 individuals about to embark on their academic journey.

The assembled group, accompanied by more than 400 family members and friends, consisted of 97 doctor of physical therapy students, 14 biokinesiology students and 17 new residents.

Clinical instructor and California Delegate of the American Physical Therapy Association, Sean Johnson DPT ’08 delivered the keynote speech describing the passion it takes to practice physical therapy and introducing the incoming class to the discipline.

“The best way to describe our profession, the best way to describe what it is that we do is that … we are movement dysfunction specialists,” he told the group.

The evening’s ceremony also recognized distinguished individuals from the division, including the merit-based scholarships recipients and graduates from the residency programs.

The program concluded with presentations of the white coats and the reading of Oath of the Physical Therapist by the incoming class members.

“By establishing this ritual at the beginning of your physical therapy education, we hope you will become aware of your responsibilities from the first day of training,” said associate chair and associate professor of clinical physical therapy, Cheryl Resnik DPT ’97 in her address to the incoming students.

“You are encouraged to accept the obligations inherent in the practice of physical therapy: to be excellent in science, to be compassionate and to lead lives of dignity and honor.”

Click to enjoy photos of the event - by Drew Blanchard DPT ’17 

Click for additional photos - by GradImages

See below for the complete list of scholarship recipients, awardees and graduating residents.

 Year 1 Academic Excellence Scholarship:

Carly Bagnall
Stephani Berg
Elizabeth Branco
Alexandra Cohen
Claire Cronenweth
Emily Hernandez
Sarah Hiramatsu
Nicole Kriskovich
Michael Lau
Timothy Lim
Stephanie Ma
Alina Marrone
Lisa Reed
Katherine Schmitz
Allie Southam
Joyce Wondolowski
Wai Chung Wong
Lily Wu

Year 2 Academic Excellence Scholarships:
Rachel Buckner
Marie Calvet
Claire Castiglioni
Stefanie Cheng
Jordan Christensen
Joseph Derian
Emily Ferree
Natalie Green
Kathryn Guy
Constance Hutchins
Gohar Koshkaryan
Benjamin Kwan
Malina Lorring
Tara O'Brien
Lisa Tan
Hannah Wallis
Lindsay Wofford

Physical Therapy Multicultural Leadership Alliance (PTMLA) Scholarship:
Christina Stewart

Josette Antonelli Division Service Scholarship:
Marisol Kiesz
Jason Manalili

Kathleen Bice Clinical Excellence Scholarship:

Rachel Buckner

Jesus Dominguez Scholarship:
Erica Harris
Alina Marrone
Joyce Wondolowski

Beth E. Fisher Scholarship:
Alice Chow

Helen Hislop Scholarship in Support of Vision and Excellence in Physical Therapy:
Joseph Derian

Sykes Family Scholarship:
Lindsay Wofford

Jacquelin Perry Scholarship Award:
Kristamarie Pratt

Clinical Educator of the Year Award:
Kenneth Kim

Distinguished Alumni Award:
Jeanine Gunn

Graduates of our residency programs are as follows: 

Neurologic Physical Therapy:
Darlene Ardavany
Danielle Boufadel
Nora Darakjian
Shari MacDonald

Orthopedic Physical Therapy:
Jack Wen Duo Chan
Lyssa Cleary
Charles William Johnson
Tyson Matsumoto
Courtney Medlen
Chukwuemeka S. Nwigwe
Adrienne Peterson
Jaclyn Nicole Spirtos

Sports Physical Therapy:
Emily Bolthouse
Sophia Gonzalez
Meredith Vegh
Garin Wyberg