When most Coloradans flip their calendars from April to May, they smile and ponder the period of peaceful transition that lies ahead: flowers bloom, the sun warms the pristine mountain lakes, spring turns to summer.
First year physical therapy students, likewise, anticipate a time of transition—albeit a bit more abrupt! Regis PT students undergo finals in the first week of May, and once that is conquered, one glorious week of break ensues. Many students take advantage of the time off by visiting family, traveling, or enjoying the many pleasures of Denver while allowing their usually overflowing minds to be idle. They return a week later to a relatively bare campus (3rd years are graduated, 2nd years are on clinical, and undergraduates have scattered) as true rulers of the roost.
The 3rd semester of PT school is—dare I say—a time of reprieve. Courses shift focus from foundational sciences to instead hone in on management. Although this involves much more time spent in class/labs, students are expressing joy in finding more time out of class to devote to recreational pursuits…and no better place exists, in my humble opinion, than beautiful Colorado for making a memorable third semester! I could probably write an entire brochure on the prodigious amount of adventures to be had in the Denver area, but below I’ve highlighted just a few activities for Regis students seeking to make the most of their budding summer.
1. Survive spring finals.
Stay passionate, study for neuroscience, and victory is assured.
2. Take advantage of your break.
In the first 2 semesters, PT students put their hearts into every academic excursion they undertake (anatomy dissection, manual skills checks, service learning, etc.), so by the time summer rolls around, they’ve earned every second of their time off. I urge students to use that time to be self-serving. If you miss your family, go home. If you long to travel, rally your buddies and hit the road. If you need to sit on the couch and eat donut holes, start researching TV series to binge watch now.
3. Relax at Coors Field.
Rockies games are shockingly affordable, and you can’t beat the baseball park atmosphere.
Gather your classmates on Friday after class and head for Rocky Mountain National Park. Physically getting away on the weekends is an ideal way to recharge (plus: s’mores).
5. Check out the brewery scene.
Denver is a beer lover’s wonderland. Enthusiasts can walk among 20 breweries in LoHi alone: Denver Brewing Co., Great Divide, Wynkoop, Vine Street Pub, and Breckenridge are just a few favorites.
6. Take regular night hikes.
As nights grow balmier, head out to Boulder to traverse the trails in Chautauqua Park and get a stunning view of both the stars and city lights.
7. Reflect on the past year and what lies ahead.
The life of a student physical therapist is a beautiful struggle. After your first year, don’t forget to take the time to consider everything you’ve learned, how much you’ve grown, and the divine opportunities that await you.
Apart from blogging, Meg (Class of 2019) is a member of the social media committee for the Move Forward race, a member of the Foot and Ankle Special Interest Group, and was Boss of the Applesauce in April (this is a big deal). Her current goal after graduating is to work in an outpatient neuro rehab facility.