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2017 Archive

2017 News and Events

Students, Faculty Present at ArPTA OPTtimize 2017 

UCA Physical Therapy was well represented October 6-8 at the 2017 OPTimize Conference in Fayetteville, AR. Students, faculty, and alumni were involved in presenting research, attending educational sessions from regional and national speakers on innovative ideas and topics in the physical therapy field, and working hard behind the scenes to make sure everything ran smoothly. This is an annual conference that was developed by the Arkansas Physical Therapy Association. #OPTimize2017 #ArPTA #UCADPT.  Pictured right are DPT Class of 2019 students from left to right, Brandon Meek, Kelly Vanlandingham, (Dr. VanHoose), Allyson Rose, and Logan DeWhitt, with Dr. VanHoose, one of the UCA research poster presentations.

Students Featured in Healthcare Journal of Little

Students Featured in recent issue of Healthcare Journal of Little Rock


UCA DPT students are featured in the September / October 2017 issue of Healthcare Journal of Little Rock for their recent receipt of the Excellence and Biggest Stretch Awards from the Foundation for Physical Therapy.  Students raised $11,002 in the Marquette Challenge.

Cathcart to Present Symposium at CSM

Dr. Darla Cathcart, Clinical Instructor in the Department of Physical Therapy, has had the following peer-reviewed symposium, Novel Approaches to Dilator Therapy, accepted for presentation at the APTA Combined Sections Meeting in New Orleans scheduled for February 2018.

PT Faculty, Students and Alumni Have Research Accepted to CSM 2018 

UCA PT faculty, students and alumni will present at the American Physical Therapy Association Combined Sections Meeting (CSM) in New Orleans, in February 2018.  The following have had their research accepted to CSM including Physical Therapy faculty members (bold, underlined), students (DPT and PhD -bold italics; undergraduate – underlined), and alumni (italics):

Blankenship CLowe L. Body weight support treadmill training (BWSTT) for a non-ambulatory child with cerebral palsy who is blind.

Floyd JSydney B, Light B, Price C, Lairamore C. The effects of transcranial direct current stimulation on cortical excitability and motor behaviors of the lower extremity: a systematic review.

Lester A, Clark D, Higginbotham S, Merritt P, VanHoose L. Changes in pain and distress during pivotal cancer care time points.

Lowe LCrowder M, Watson T, Yates C. The effect of a divided attention task on gait velocity in high school male athletes

Lowe L, Baker J, Codemo S, Kordsmeier J,  Garrison K.  ““Y” Balance test using a force plate in high school athletes.

Perkins K, Blancett D, Graham T, Young R, Lairamore, C.  The effect of transcranial direct current stimulation on ankle torque production when delivered with two different electrode montages.

Reese NBBandy WD, Rainey J, Baldwin L, Moore K, Razon C. Predictive reliability of admission and DPT program factors on National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) scores.

Yates CFerguson S, Kapella K, Lowe L. Auditory reaction time using the psychomotor vigilance task in male high school athletes.

Yates CLuyet E, Guinn T, Hart LLowe L. The effect of a divided attention task on double and single limb support parameters of gait in high school male athletes.

Congratulations – DPT 2017 Graduates

UCA DPT Class of 2017

The UCA Doctor of Physical Therapy Class of 2017 celebrated with Convocation Ceremonies held on August 11 in Reynolds Auditorium at UCA.  Dr. Tiffany Huitt provided the key note address to the graduates. Dr. Huitt is a former Department of Physical Therapy.  Wesley Northey was the student speaker from the the Class of 2017.  The Department of Physical Therapy recognized graduates of the DPT program as well as the Pediatric Residents who completed the UCA PT Pediatric Residency this year.  The UCA Administration offered their words of wisdom to the graduates including President Davis, Dean Ishee of the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences, Dean Barlow of the Graduate School.  Associate Provost Jonathan Glenn also attended.  A reception for graduates and their families with Department of Physical Therapy faculty immediately followed in the McCastlain Ballroom at UCA.

2017 Outstanding DPT Student

Dr. Kelsey Davidson

The class of 2017 selected Kelsey Davidson as the 2017 Outstanding DPT Student.  Dr. Davidson received the award during Convocation Ceremonies held August 11 at Reynolds Performance Hall.  The recipient of the award is selected by the student class. Dr. Davidson served as the President of the PT Club during the 2016-2017 academic year.

First Recipient of Charlotte Mills Fant Memorial Scholarship

Dr. Bennett with Candice Miller

Dr. Sara Bennett of Texarkana, sister of Ms. Charlotte Fant, presented Candice Miller of the DPT Class of 2020 with the Charlotte Mills Fant Memorial Scholarship. Ms. Miller is the first recipient of the recently endowed memorial scholarship named in memory of long-time Department of Physical Therapy Program Advisor, Charlotte Fant.  Dr. Nancy Reese presented the Charlotte Mills Fant Memorial Scholarship plaque that will be permanently displayed in McCastlain Hall at UCA.

2017 PT Scholarship Recipients Announced

2017 Joe Finnell Scholarship Recipients

The Department of Physical Therapy recently awarded

Grubbs Family with Anna Wargo

scholarships to Doctor of Physical Therapy students during 2017 Physical Therapy Convocation ceremonies held on August 11 at Reynolds Performance Hall.  Dr. Sara Bennett presented Candice Miller of the DPT Class of 2020 with the first Charlotte Mills Fant Memorial Scholarship; Dr. Nancy Reese presented the Joe Finnell Scholarship to Samuel Codemo, Anna Wargo, and Timia Watson of the Class of 2018 as well as Hailey Durham, Hannah Sagers of the Class of 2019.  Dr. Margaret McGee presented the Thomas Meadows Scholarship to Anna Wargo.  And, the Grubbs Family including Nat and Tracy with daughter Melissa, presented the Madeline Ann Grubbs Scholarship to Anna Wargo.

APTA Credentialed Clinical Instructor Program (CCIP) – September 22-23, 2017

The University of Arkansas and the UCA Department of Physical Therapy will host the Credentialed Clinical Instructor Program on September 22-23, 2017 (Friday/Saturday) in Fayetteville, AR.  The 16 hour course (1.6 CEU) will be presented by Dr. Misty Booth.   Deadline to register is August 25, 2017.  Contact Dollie Resh at (479) 713-8600 for more information.

Dr. Booth Assists with Pocahontas Flood Relief

Dr. Misty Booth was one of six UCA faculty and staff members who traveled to Pocahontas during June to help with flood relief efforts. All were featured in an article in the Log Cabin Democrat on May 31. The article may be viewed at the following link.

We’re proud of Dr. Booth for her service!

Dr. Quiben Receives APTA Award for Excellence in Academic Teaching

Dr. Myla Quiben, a graduate of the UCA PhD program in Physical Therapy and a former faculty member at UCA is the 2017 recipient of the Dorothy Baethke-Eleanor J. Carlin Award for Excellence in Academic Teaching from the American Physical Therapy Association.  This is a national award given each year to a single individual for teaching excellence in Physical Therapy education.  Dr. Quiben is the second UCA graduate and former UCA faculty member to win this award.  The first UCA alumnus was Dr. K. Jackson Thomas, who received the award in 2011 as is currently a faculty member at the Medical University of South Carolina.

UCA DPT Students Participate in Reach 100, an APTA Membership Drive  Reach100_WebButton2017_HonorableMention

DPT Students recently participated in the American Physical Therapy Associations 2017 APTA Student Membership Challenge, a national membership drive initiative.  UCA students were awarded Honorable Mention.

UCA DPT Students Receive Award of Excellence

The University of Central Arkansas has won the Award of Excellence in the 2016-2017 VCU–Marquette Challenge. UCA physical therapy students raised a total of $11,002 in this year’s Challenge.  The University of Central Arkansas DPT students have also won the Biggest Stretch Award in the 2016-2017 VCU–Marquette Challenge. UCA stretched its fundraising base for the greatest increase in funds raised over last year, raising $10,499 more than their total for the 2015-2016 Marquette Challenge.  The Marquette Challenge is an annual grassroots fundraising effort coordinated and carried out by physical therapist and physical therapist assistant students across the country to support new investigators in the field of physical therapy research.  The Challenge is the Foundation’s signature annual fundraising initiative raising more funds each year than any other Foundation activity. Since its inception, 264 schools have participated in the Challenge, raising over $3.3 million for physical therapy research.

Dr. Yates Receives UCA Faculty Research Excellence Award

Dr. Yates pictured with President Davis and Provost Runge

President Davis, Dr. Yates and Provost Runge

Dr. Charlotte Yates, PhD, PT, PCS, Associate Professor of Physical Therapy, is the winner of the 2017 UCA Faculty Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity Award. Dr. Yates was recognized by the university for her research excellence at the UCA Employee Service Awards ceremony held on Tuesday, April 18.  Her research is currently making a difference in many lives.  Her research with preterm infants regarding alleviating pain during medical procedures has influenced new and improved methods of reducing pain and stress of medical procedures for newborns, including changes in the care of pre-term infants in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.  Dr. Yates has also investigated the use of neurocognitive and balance testing for high school football players with concussions.  This project will yield important information regarding appropriate testing to determine when such players should be allowed back on the field.  Dr. Yates involves students as co-investigators, which has led to numerous co-publications and co-presentations for UCA alumni.

NPTE Item-Writer’s Workshop July 7-8

UCA will host the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT) National Physical Therapy Exam (NPTE) Item-Writer’s Workshop on July 7 – 8, 2017 at the PT Center in Conway.  If you are a practicing physical therapist or physical therapist assistant, apply online today at  Previous item-writing experience not necessary; PT or PTA license plus two years experience is required.  The course is free and meals are provided. See Regional Item Writer Flyer – Central Arkansas for more information or contact Dr. Chad Lairamore at


UCA Ranked #11 in Most Affordable DPT Programs30 MOST AFFORDABLE DOCTOR OF PHYSICAL THERAPY (DPT) DEGREES has published a listing of the most affordable in tuition cost for the Most Affordable Doctor of Physical Therapy degree ranking.  UCA has been ranked #11 in the most affordable Doctor of Physical Therapy programs in the U.S. – see the link.  Programs are programs evaluated based on publicly available information regarding accreditation, academic quality, student satisfaction, cost and estimated
length of study.

Physical Therapy Open House -April 82017 OPEN HOUSE FLYER_pic

The Department of Physical Therapy at the University of Central Arkansas will host a Physical Therapy Open House on Saturday, April 8, from 10:00 AM -12:00 PM.  Prospective DPT students are encouraged to attend.  Department tours and a chance to ask questions will be available.

Mr. Joe Finnell (1927-2017)

It is with sadness that we share the news that Mr. Joe Finnell, the founding chairperson of the UCA Department of Physical Therapy, passed away on February 18, 2017.  He was 90 years old.  Graveside services were held on Saturday, February 25 in El Dorado, AR, by Roller-Chenal Funeral Home; see on-line guestbook at  Mr. Finnell was preceded in death by his wife Mary Isabel Hanna Finnell and son Charles Albert Finnell. He is survived by his son Fergus Finnell and his wife.   Memorials may be made to the Joe C. Finnell Physical Therapy Scholarship Fund at UCA, PO Box 4986, 2490 Bruce St, Conway, AR 72035 or at

UCA PT in San Antonio, February 15-19

UCA Poster Schedule CSM San Antonio.  UCA Faculty and Students to Present at 2017 Combined Section’s Meeting of the APTA on February 15-19 in San Antonio, TX.  See Faculty and Students Presenting at CSM.  Dr. Leah Lowe will be recognized on February 15 as a Pediatric Certified Specialists during opening ceremonies.

Cathcart Awarded Instructor of the Year

Darla Cathcart, PT, DPT, WCS, CLT, is being awarded the Instructor of the Year for CAPP-OB courses, certificate in pregnancy and postpartum Physical Therapy courses provided through the Section on Women’s Health (SoWH) of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA).  She will receive this award at SoWH’s annual business meeting at APTA’s Combined Section Meeting in San Antonio, TX, on February 17th.

UCA Students Perform Well on NPTE

UCA Doctor of Physical Therapy graduates of 2016 achieved a 92.3% First Time Pass Rate on the National Physical Therapy Exam (NPTE) and an Ultimate Pass Rate of 100%.

Timia Watson, SPT to Serve on APTA Committee

Tamia Watson, DPT Class of 2018

Tamia Watson, SPT

Second-year DPT student, Timia Watson of the DPT Class of 2018, has been selected to serve on the American Physical Therapy Association Community Service Project Committee. This is a national committee and selection is through a competitive application process.  Timia also serves as the treasurer of the UCA Physical Therapy Club, a service organization for UCA physical therapy students.  The Department of Physical Therapy congratulates Tamia.

National Academies of Practice in Physical Therapy Selects Lairamore

Dr. Chad Lairamore, Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy, has been elected to Distinguished Fellowship of the National Academies of Practice in Physical Therapy (NAP).  Outstanding healthcare leaders and practitioners of NAP work together as an interdisciplinary force to influence national health policy, legislation, and promote quality healthcare through cooperative advocacy, practice, education and research.  Dr. Lairamore will be inducted during a Gala Banquet in March during the 2017 NAP Annual Meeting & Forum in Philadelphia, PA.