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2018 Archive

2018 News and Events

Students Celebrate Friendsgiving 2018

Students from the DPT Class of 2021 recently took a break from first semester classes to celebrate new friendships with classmates by hosting a Friendsgiving.  The class is enjoying life in PT school and lifelong friendships as they bond over practical exams!

Friendsgiving 2018








Halloween Bash 2018

UCA PT students enjoyed another entertaining Halloween Bash this year.  First year students joined second year students (some third years too!) in this annual tradition with great enthusiasm.
Thanks to the PT Club for providing a pizza lunch and costume contest.   The costumes were as creative as ever with a lot of laughter and time spent together taking a well-deserved break!  Second year students soon after took their final exams before leaving for the clinic!

Halloween 2018







Dr. Garrison and Colleagues Receive Grant Approaching $1M

Dr. Garrison

Dr. Kevin Garrison recently received extramural funding in collaboration with the Geriatric Research Education and Clinical Center (GRECC).  Dr. Garrison is a Co-PI on the 4 year award that totals nearly $1M.

Kalpana Padala (PI), Dennis Sullivan, Paula Roberson, Prasad Padala, Kevin Garrison, Richard Dennis, Rachel Fazio (Co-PI’s). Neuromodulation for Exercise Adherence in Older Veterans.  VA RR&D Merit Research Grant 2018-2022:  $969,606


Dr. Chad Lairamore

Dr. Lairamore Reappointed to Federation  Committee


Dr. Chad Lairamore, Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy, has been re-appointed by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT) to serve another 3-year term as Co-Chair of the FSBPT Examination Committee. This committee oversees development of the National Physical Therapy Examination.


Dr. Collier to Publish Research Paper

Dr. Collier

Dr. Larissa Collier, Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy, recently had a research paper accepted for publication.

A Tale of Two Cities: A Comparison of Urban and Rural Trauma in Medieval Denmark; International Journal of Paleopathology




Students Attend ArPTA Meeting, September 2018


Physical Therapy Students





ArPTA Optimize 2018, Little Rock







Students & Faculty Presentations at ArPTA Optimize

The following physical therapy faculty and students recently presented research at the Arkansas Physical Therapy Association Optimize Conference held on September 28-29 in Little Rock.  UCA students (PhD and DPT) are indicated by an asterisk.

Dominguez M*, Lairamore C. Aligning Clinical Practice & Education: An Interprofessional Collaborative Experience for Students.

Tiarks N*, Gallagher M, Lairamore C, Garrison K. The Effects of Different Intervals of Blood Flow Restriction Cycling on Energy Expenditure, Hemodynamics, and Perception.

Odom B*, Lowe L, Vanhoose L, Yates C. Tracheostomy wound healing in the pediatric population: A retrospective study.

Bandy WDReese NB, Cole A*, Mayo A*, Pierceall T*, Pollard D*, Sweere C*.  Differences In Physical Therapy Program Outcomes Based On Institutional Classification.

Hart L*, Yates C, Carter M*, Carroll C*, Lowe L. Frequency of ImPACT testing for the high school athlete.

Lowe L, Beck B*, Ripley S*, Wade L*, Yates C.  Exploration of two clinical postural control assessments in adolescents with concussion.

Pruett A*, Sayes K*, Garrison K, Lairamore C. The Effect Of Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation On Lower Extremity Motor Tasks When Delivered With Two Different Electrode Montages.

Reese NB, Bandy WDCole A*, Mayo A*, Pierceall T*, Pollard D*, Sweere C*.  Impact Of The Number Of Core Faculty FTEs On Physical Therapy Program Outcomes.

Dr. Lairamore Appointed to AIHC Committee

Dr. Chad Lairamore, Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy, was appointed to the Programming Committee – Regional Conference sub-committee for the American Interprofessional Health Collaborative (AIHC).

UCA ranked 3rd in Nation for PT

The 2018 Top Graduate Program rankings represent graduate schools and programs all across the nation and are based on student reviews. Due to extremely high student satisfaction ratings, the University of Central Arkansas made the rankings at #3 in Physical Therapy degrees! The full rankings are available here:

Publication by Forbush, Bandy, Garrison, Graves and Roberts 

Dr. Steve Forbush, Dr. Bill Bandy, Dr. Kevin Garrison, Dr. Leslyn Graves, Dr. Rachel Roberts have published recently in the International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy.  The title of their paper is “Testing infraspinatus and deltoid muscles with new technique to decrease deltoid activity during testing using EMG analysis.”  International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy 2018;13:2-9. Drs. Graves and Roberts are alumni from the UCA DPT Class of 2017.  Drs. Forbush, Bandy, and Garrison are on faculty in the PT Department.

Dr. Forbush to Receive ArPTA Distinguished Service Award

Congratulations to Dr. Steve Forbush – who was notified that he will be receiving the ArPTA Distinguished Service Award at the 2018 ArPTA Awards Banquet in September. “This award is for significant contribution to physical therapy in Arkansas in one or more of the following areas: Public awareness, Administration, Education, Patient Care, or Research.”  Dr. Forbush, PT, PhD, OCS, is an Associate Professor and board certified orthopedic specialist in the Physical Therapy Department at the University of Central Arkansas.

2018 Pediatric Residents:  Dr. Rimple and Dr. Sharum

2018 UCA Pediatric PT Residen

Congratulations to Melissa Rimple, PT, DPT and Stephanie Sharum, PT, DPT, for completing the UCA Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency Program.  Drs. Rimple and Sharum were presented certificates by Dr. Misty Booth, Director of the UCA Pediatric Residency program, during the 2018 UCA DPT Convocation ceremony held on August 10 at Reynolds Performance Hall in Conway.  The University of Central Arkansas Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency Program is a full-time residency program offered in cooperation with Arkansas Children’s Hospital and Allied Therapy and Consulting Services. The UCA Pediatric Residency Program is accredited by the American Board of Physical Therapy Residency and Fellowship Education.

Pictured left to right are Dr. McGee, Dr. Booth, Dr. Rimple, Dr. Yates, and Dr. Sharum.

2018 PT Scholarship Recipients Announced

2018 Joe Finnell PT Scholarship Recipients with Dr. Garrison

The Department of Physical Therapy recently announced UCA Foundation Physical Therapy scholarships to DPT students on Friday, August 10 during DPT Convocation at Reynolds Performance Hall. Dr. Kevin Garrison, Interim Chairperson, presented the Joe Finnell Scholarship to third year students in the DPT Class of 2019 (pictured left to right) Amber Allison, Hailey Durham, Sara Eller, Brittany Jones (DPT Class of 2020) and Hannah Sagers. Hannah Sagers was also the recipient of the Thomas Meadows Scholarship presented by Dr. Margaret McGee. Nat and Traci Grubbs and family presented the Madeline Ann Grubbs Scholarship to third year student Troy Brunson of the DPT Class of 2019. The Charlotte Mills Fant Memorial Scholarship was presented by Dr. Sarah Barnett, sister of Ms. Fant, to Treslyn Fletcher a first year student in the DPT Class of 2021. All PT scholarships are a result the continued generous support by PT Alumni and Friends through annual giving.

Thomas Meadows Scholarship Recipient Hannah Sagers with Dr. McGee








Charlotte Mills Fant Scholarship Recipient Treslyn Fletcher with Dr. Barnett








Madeline Ann Grubbs Scholarship Recipient Troy Brunson with Mr. and Mrs. Grubbs








2018 DPT Convocation August 10

2018 Outstanding DPT Student Morgan Crowder with Dr. Forbush

The Department of Physical Therapy recently held DPT Convocation ceremonies for the Class of 2018 on August 10 at Reynolds Performance Hall at the University of Central Arkansas.  Dr. Chad Lairamore, Association Professor of Physical Therapy, was the keynote speaker.  Dr. Angela Barlow, Dean of the Graduate School, and Dr. Jimmy Ishee, Dean of the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences, greeted the graduates and guests.  Fifty-two students completed the UCA Doctor of Physical Therapy program.  The class selected Morgan Crowder as the Outstanding DPT Student of the Class of 2018.  Dr. Forbush presented the award to Morgan who also served as the Class President of her class from 2015 – 2018.  Also during Convocation DPT Student Excellence Awards were announced for students in the Class of 2018 including awards for Leadership, Service, Research, Academics and Clinical Excellence as well as the 2018 PT Foundation Scholarship recipients. Following the Convocation ceremony the graduates and family and friends were greeted by faculty and staff at DPT Reception held in McCastlain Hall on campus.

2018 DPT Student Excellence Award Recipients

Students in the Class of 2018 were recognized for Excellence in Leadership, Service, Clinical Practice, Research, and Academics.  Students are nominated for Leadership and Service Excellence by their peers and faculty.  This year’s recipients of the Leadership Excellence award are Joey Baker and Morgan Crowder.  Service Excellence Award recipients are Emyleigh Wood, Julie Jenner and Daniel Amaro.  Hannah Haney and Tim Wilson received the 2018 Clinical Excellence Award.  Research Excellence Award recipients are those students who presented a poster or paper at a state or national meeting.   The 2018 Research Excellence Award recipients are Joey Baker, Dorothy Clark, Sam Codemo, Morgan Crowder, Shea Ferguson, Tyalor Guinn, Sarah Higginbotham, Kelsey Kapella, Jennifer Kordsmeier, Anna Lester, Emily Luyet, Phillip Merritt, Jerrod Spencer, Kirsty Stein, Britny Tomlin, and Timia Watson.   Thirteen DPT students were also recognized for Academic Excellence in achieving a GPA of 3.9 or above.

2018 Leadership Excellence Award Recipients Joey Baker and Morgan Crowder










2018 Service Excellence Award Recipients Emyleigh Wood, Julie Jenner and Daniel Amaro









2018 Research Excellence Award Recipients














APTA Credentialed Clinical Instructor Course
The UCA Department of Physical Therapy will host the APTA Credentialed Clinical Instructor Course next on November 9 – 10, 2018 at the PT Center on campus in Conway. See registration brochure here UCA CCIP November 2018. Contact Stacey Stephens at or 501-450-5549 if you have any questions.

Dr. Forbush Honored with APTA’s Lucy Blair Service Award 

Dr. Steven Forbush, an Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy

Steven Forbush

at the University of Central Arkansas, is being honored as a recipient of the Lucy Blair Service Award by the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA). The award will be presented at the NEXT APTA Conference and Exposition on June 17-30, 2018 in Orlando, Florida.  Each year APTA honors outstanding achievements on the part of its members in the areas of overall accomplishment, education, practice and service, publications, research, and academic excellence. The Lucy Blair Service Award honors physical therapist members or physical therapist life members whose contributions to APTA are of exceptional quality. Qualifying contributions can pertain to association components, through work on appointed or elected positions and/or in other capacities at the association and component levels. APTA is an individual membership professional organization representing more than 100,000 member physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, and students.  Past recipients of the Lucy Blair Service Award from the Department of Physical Therapy at the University of Central Arkansas include Dr. Nancy B. Reese, PT, PhD, MHSA (2011) and Dr. William D. Bandy, PT, PhD, SCS, ATC (2010).


Open House Held April 14

The Department of Physical Therapy recently hosted an Open House on Saturday, April 14 from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM at the Physical Therapy Center.  Students interested in apply for the UCA DPT Program are had the opportunity to visit the Physical Therapy Center and learn more about offerings in Physical Therapy at UCA.

March 8 – UCA Day of Giving

PT Focus -Charlotte Fant Memorial PT Scholarship

Many thanks to PT Alumni and Friends who have donated to the Charlotte Fant Memorial Scholarship Fund and all of the Physical Therapy funds this week!

It has been a great success. UCA Physical Therapy is stronger with your support!

You can still donate at




Alumni Reception at CSM – New Orleans

Members of the UCA Physical Therapy Faculty hosted an Alumni Reception on Friday, February 23 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM in New Orleans during the APTA Combined Sections Meeting.  Many thanks to those who were able to stop by to visit!


UCA CSM Alumni Event Invitation 2-23-2018

4th Annual Central ACCE Consortium Clinical Instructor Education Forum

The Central ACCE Consortium and the UCA Department of Physical Therapy hosted 6 hour CEU Course on Saturday, March 3 for PT and PTA Clinical Instructors at the PT Center on the University of Central Arkansas campus.  Speakers included Dr. Charlotte Yates and Dr. Lisa VanHoose of the UCA Department of Physical Therapy who presented information about pain management in infants and adults.   Also Dr. Tiffany Huitt of UAMS and Dr. Alana Bartlett of South Arkansas Rehabilitation presented information about mind-body connections in professional education and clinical practice.

The Central ACCE Consortium is comprised of the Academic Coordinators of Clinical Education and Directors of Clinical Education for PT and PTA Education Programs located in Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma and Arkansas.

Dr. Maresh Featured in Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Dr. Twala Maresh

Dr. Maresh, PT, DPT, NCS, ATP, Senior Clinical Instructor, Department of Physical Therapy, and her clinic for spinal cord injured patients was part of an article on living with a spinal cord injury that recently appeared in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette on February 12, 2018.  Dr. Maresh is a board certified clinical specialist in Neurology Physical Therapy from the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties and is a certified assistive technology practitioner.


View the article on-line at


Dr. VanHoose Receives University of Kansas Alumni Award

Dr. Lisa VanHoose


Dr. Lisa VanHoose, PhD, MPH, PT, Assistant Profession of Physical Therapy, is the recipient of the Early Career Achievement in Health Professions Alumna Award for 2018 by the University of Kansas Medical Center for her contribution to the health care profession, the community and the University of Kansas Medical Center. Alumni Award Recipients will be honored during Alumni Reunion Weekend on October 5-6, 2018.

Dr. VanHoose received her PhD in Rehabilitation Science and MPH from the University of Kansas Medical Center.  Dr. VanHoose is the Principal Investigator of the Cancer Rehabilitation and Wellness Laboratory (CReW).


Drs. Yates and Lowe Receive Funding to Study Concussion in Adolescent Athletes 

Dr. Charlotte Yates and Dr. Leah Lowe for being awarded $50,000 in grant funding by National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) Institutional Development Award (IDeA) Program (May, 2018-April 2019) for their on-going project on concussion in adolescent athletes.  The NIGMS is one of the U.S. National Institutes of Health and supports research that is the foundation for disease diagnosis, treatment, and prevention.

Dr. McGee to Present Symposium at NEXT Conference

Dr. Margaret McGee, Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy, will be presenting a symposium at the APTA NEXT Conference and Exposition 2018, to be held in Orlando, Florida, June 27-30, 2018.   The title of Dr. McGee‘s symposium is “Let’s Go! Fitness Testing to Promote Physical Literacy in Children with Disabilities”.

Dr. VanHoose Receives Grant to Study Distress Related to Cancer

Dr. Lisa VanHoose, Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy, and her research collaborators were awarded a Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) Pipeline to Proposal Tier A award. The purpose of the Pipeline to Proposals Initiative is to cultivate the development of proposals with sound scientific rigor and robust patient engagement. PCORI expects the Pipeline to Proposals project will help individuals form new collaborations that can produce meaningful research proposals.  The funds that Dr. VanHoose and her team have received will be used to build a partnership of individuals and groups who share a desire to advance patient-centered outcomes research focused on cancer distress screening and care of individuals identified as having distress related to cancer diagnosis or treatment.

Dr. Lairamore Named Co-Chair of NPTE Committee

Dr. Chad Lairamore, Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy, has been named by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy as Co-Chair of the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) Examination Development Committee. The NPTE is the national licensure examination for physical therapists. The Examination Development Committee oversees the item construction and exam review process in order to maintain the validity and reliability of the NPTE.

Drs. Reese, Forbush Elected Delegates to APTA

Two individuals from the Department of Physical Therapy were recently elected to represent the Arkansas Physical Therapy Association at the annual House of Delegates of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) that meets each June.  Dr. Steve Forbush, Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy  was elected to a 3 year term as Chief Delegate and Dr. Nancy Reese, Professor and Chairperson in the Department of Physical Therapy, was elected to a two year term as Delegate.