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What's New with Faculty?

Dr. Peggy Gleeson, Associate Director of the TWU School of Physical Therapy, was just notified that she is the 2014 recipient of a Lucy Blair Service Award from the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA.) The purpose of this award is “To acknowledge and honor physical therapist members of the Association whose contributions to the Association as a whole, at both the Association level and the component level, like those of Lucy Blair, have been of exceptional value.” Dr. Gleeson is completing her 4 years of service as President of the Education Section of the APTA and has served that section in various capacities for a total of 12 years. She is extremely deserving of this honor and we are very proud of her.

Dr. Mary Thompson is a 2014 recipient of the Lucy Blair Service Award from the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA.)  for her work with the Academy of Geriatric Physical Therapy (formerly Section on Geriatrics), American Board of PT Specialties,  and American Board of Physical Therapy Residencies and Fellowship Education (ABPTRFE).  Dr. Thompson just completed a 3 year term on the Board of Directors for the Academy and has served the Academy in numerous other roles for many years.   She is currently on the Credentialing Services Committee for the  ABPTRFE. 

Dr. Shih-Chiao Tseng, PT, PhD (Houston) was recently awarded a grant from the TWU Research Enhancement Program New Investigator Competition for her project Comparison of Motor Skill Acquisition between Stroke Survivors and Healthy Individuals. Chronic stroke survivors frequently show persistent deficits in gait that may be caused by diminished capability of re-acquiring movement skills post stroke. Thus, the  purpose of this study is to examine stroke survivors’ capability of learning a novel leg task.

Dr. Carolyn Kelley, PT, DSc, NCS (Houston) was awarded a $25,000 grant as principal investigator (PI) from Post-Polio Health International (PHI) for her study, Effects of Whole Body Vibration on People with Post-Polio Syndrome.  Whole body vibration has shown early promising results with frail elders and people with various neurologic conditions in pain reduction, strengthening and bone density improvement.


TWU was represented by Dr. Sharon Olson, Director of the School of Physical Therapy (6th from left) and Dr. Nancy Luca. Annise D. Parker, Mayor of the City of Houston, proclaimed September 27, 2012, as Falls Prevention Awareness Day.

Seniors at a Metropolitan Multiservice Center event.Seniors from across Houston attended a free educational and interactive event at the Metropolitan Multiservice Center from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m on October 2, 2012.  TWU Physical Therapy faculty, Dr. Andi Morganthaler, Dr. Sharon Olson, are pictured in this photo along with students Kristin O'Toole, Vanessa Martinez and Lorena Turner. They are assessing a participant's balance on the Balance Master.

Falls Prevention Day BoothDr. Peggy Gleeson, and Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) students Kristin O'Toole, Vanessa Martinez, and Lorena Turner performed both clinical and instrumented balance testing throughout the morning as part of a multi-agency effort that included 13 community partner organizations.

More Honors

Rupal Patel (Houston) was elected to serve as a Delegate-at-Large for the Texas Physical Therapy Association (TPTA) to the APTA House of Delegates for the 2012-2014 term.

Dr. Suh-Jen Lin (Dallas) was awarded one of five prestigious TWU Chancellor's Research Fellowships for FY 2012: Dr. Lin will be mentored by Dr. Gayle Roux, Nursing – Denton.

Dr. Peggy Gleeson, Director of Clinical Education (Houston), was elected as the President of the Education Section of the American Physical Association for the 2010-2012 term.

What's New with Students?

TWU Houston DPT III student, Ryan Pontiff, presented a poster at the Association for Prevention Teaching and Research (APTR) conference held in DC last week ( His presentation: "Using the PRECEDE-PROCEED Model for Development and Implementation of a Community Health Fair for Individuals with Chronic Conditions at an Urban Adaptive Recreation Center in Houston, Texas" was related to a student project that he co-led as part of the community health promotion service learning course, PT 6152 in Fall 2013. Ryan and his classmates worked on this project under the mentorship of course coordinator, Ms. Rupal Patel, PT, MS, Associate Clinical Professor, School of Physical Therapy, Houston, Campus.

Last year, Ryan was one of only 3 DPT students selected from across the country as a Paul Ambrose Scholar, a multi-disciplinary group of medical/health professional students selected to receive this award and attend a symposium that taught them skills related to public health and prevention.

Congratulations to Ryan and his classmates that worked on this project!

Over 100 TWU DPT and t-DPT students from Dallas and Houston campuses attended the 2013 Texas Physical Therapy Association (TPTA) Legislative Day on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 in Austin, TX as part of their health policy classes to learn how to advocate for their profession and patients in the political arena. The students met with legislators and/or their staff to discuss patient access to physical therapy and other important issues that are facing the profession. Dr. Peggy Gleeson & Rupal Patel (Houston) and Dr. Mary Thompson (Dallas) were the faculty members that coordinated the field trip.

The Annual TWU Dallas Physical Therapy Research Conference took place on November 29, 2012 with an excellent keynote address delivered by Dr. Michael Puthoff on Power Training and the Older Adult. The event featured platform and poster presentations by current Dallas campus DPT Class of 2013 students as well as post-professional physical therapy students. The first year DPT students provided manpower for the event and the event was well attended by area clinicians, faculty and students. 1st and 2nd place prizes were awarded for Best Poster and Best Platform. 

The 9th Annual TWU Houston Physical Therapy Research Conference took place on November 29, 2012 with keynote address by nationally recognized speaker, author and educator, Dr. Bill Boissonnault, PT, DPT, DHSc, FAAOMPT, FAPTA. The event featured platform and poster presentations by the DPT Class of 2013 students as well as platform presentations by PhD students and PT faculty, Dr. Anne O'Donnell, Dr. Alex Ortiz and Dr. Shih-Chiao Tseng. Over 250 people including area physical therapy clinicians, students and faculty attended the event which included free CCUs, free parking, free food, and cash prizes for best platform and best poster winners thanks to the generous support from our TWU Friend of Physical Therapy Corporate Sponsor, Memorial Hermann Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation. A Pre-Conference Ethics course was also provided for free by Houston faculty member, Rupal Patel, PT MS

Stacy Suttton, Simran Bakshi Gutierrez, Stepahnie Mortan DPT Class of 2013Stacy Sutton, Simran Bakshi Gutierrez and Stephanie Morton (TWU Houston DPT Class of 2013)  presented their professional research project,"Reliability and Validity of Goniometric iPhone Applications for the Assessment of Active Shoulder External Rotation: A Methodological Study" at the National Center for Human Performance's Annual Conference on November 8, 2012 in Houston, Texas. Their faculty mentor is Dr. Katy Mitchell, PT, PhD (Houston).

Arianne Black

Ariane Stoker Black, (TWU Houston DPT Class of 2014) was awarded a TYLENOL® Future Care Scholarship. Ariane is an inspiring student who was chosen amongst thousands of candidates to be named a TYLENOL® Future Care Scholar. The TYLENOL® Future Care Scholarship is awarded to those who possess leadership qualities, exemplify academic excellence and have a passion for community involvement. The makers of TYLENOL® are proud to provide support to exceptional students as they pursue careers caring for others. 

TWU Houston DPT Class of 2013

TWU DPT Students in Guatemala

Following in the footsteps of the Class of 2012, for one week in May, during their semester break from classes, 15 students from the TWU Houston DPT Class of 2013 traveled to Zacapa, Guatemala as volunteers providing international aid. The group was split into two teams to provide physical therapy care over a two week period. Both teams partnered with Hearts in Motion, an organization that has been providing care and services in Guatemala for decades. During the two weeks, the teams were able to provide care to over 100 people throughout the area in a local PT clinic, a nutrition center, a special education school, and in some people's homes. It was an unforgettable and fulfilling experience that many hope to repeat in the future. Generous support provided by friends, family, fellow students and faculty made it possible for the group to fund this trip.  

TWU Dallas Post-Professional Students

Emerenciana Hines, PT (PhD Student) received a Texas Physical Therapy Foundation Grant for her study titled The Effect of Home-Base Velocity Training on Muscle Strength and Power,Functional Performance and Physical Activity Behavior in Individuals with Total Knee Arthroplasty.

Mohammad Almadan, PT, (PhD Student) received a Texas Physical Therapy Foundation Grant for his study titled The Effect of Lumbopelvic Manipulation on Neuromuscular Activity of Back and Hip Muscles in Adults with Chronic Low Back Pain.

Karina Kunder (PhD student) received the APTA Section on Pediatrics Research Grant for $10,000 for her project "Effectiveness of Spinal Stabilization Exercises for Low Back Pain (LBP) in Adolescents with IS"  for 2012 - 2013.

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page last updated 7/18/2017 9:41 AM