Name: Nolan Ripple
Hometown: Peoria, AZ
Undergrad: University of Portland, OR
Fun Fact: Lacrosse player freshly converted to marathon enthusiast.
Hello all! My name is Nolan Ripple and I am a first year PT student. About two weeks ago, the national PT conference for students and professionals—called the Combined Sections Meeting—was held in Anaheim, California. During our three years at Regis, each one of us is expected to attend one national conference. And—since this one was so close and we had class time off—many students chose to go, including myself.
Going into the experience as a first year student, I wasn’t expecting to receive much more than the credit of actually going and checking it off the list. However, I can say that despite being relatively new in PT school, CSM was a positive experience both professionally and personally. First, imagine sun, the beach, good food (In N Out included!), time off of a grueling second semester, and a bunch of classmates hanging out. It was impossible not to have a good time…Needless to say, there was plenty of fun mixed into the week, and students enjoyed time at the beach, local restaurants and breweries, and mingling with the PT students and professionals from around the country. It was invaluable to build that camaraderie amongst one another and within the PT community as a whole: it was refreshing to take a step back and see how other schools and clinics operate than the ones in the immediate Regis community.
In regards to the actual conference, I thought it was well organized and there were a plethora of talks to attend. The lectures I attended ranged from topics of trunk stability and pelvic performance, running mechanics, concussion rehab in pediatrics, and even one concerning “burnout” in the PT profession. It was super cool to engage in a number of topics, especially ones that are less emphasized in our own curriculum. To put it bluntly, some speakers were better than others. In that sense, I definitely had my favorite talks. But, overall, being able to learn and engage in a variety of specialties was an extraordinary opportunity.
With so much time off, I also got to see a lot of family. I stayed with my grandparents and visited my aunt, uncle, and two cousins out there. The majority of students crammed into hotel rooms together, but as part of the Regis PT family, that is no weirder than a normal palpation lab. Overall, this was an excellent opportunity to step back from the daily work of school, learn from professionals, and spend quality time with friends and peers. A- experience (if it hadn’t rained the first day…then A+).