College Launches Celebrate 50 PTA Scholarship

The Clarkson College Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA) program is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the PTA profession by launching the Celebrate 50 Scholarship, which will award 50, $1,000 scholarships to individuals interested in pursuing a degree in the growing PTA field.

The scholarships will be awarded to students enrolling in the Associate of Science in PTA degree option at Clarkson College. The institution created the Celebrate 50 Scholarship to recognize the long history of the PTA profession and highlight their own PTA program, one of several health care education options at the College.

“The history of Clarkson College is rooted in nursing education, but today, we are so much more than that,” says Vice President of Academic Affairs Andreia Nebel, P.T., D.P.T., FNAP. “We strive to fulfill our Mission to prepare students to provide high quality, ethical and compassionate health care services in a variety of fields, and the Celebrate 50 Scholarship allows us to recognize our highly successful PTA program and the students who commit to this rewarding field.”

The scholarship will also encourage growth within the PTA field in which more practitioners are needed to meet the needs of the aging population. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the need for PTAs is expected to grow 26 percent through 2028, much faster than the national average. Graduates of the Clarkson College program consistently experience a 93 percent average board pass rate and a 100 percent job placement rate after graduation.

“The Clarkson College PTA program has given me the best possible foundation to enter the work force,” says graduate Katherine Pursell. “The one-on-one instruction I received from faculty and hands-on experiences I gained in clinicals prepared me for success and gave me the confidence to help patients of all ages and abilities.”  

The program has graduated more than 500 professionals, more than any other in the state of Nebraska, since the College launched their Associate’s degree in PTA in fall 1994. Accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education since 1996, the program now includes specific transfer options and a dual degree option in Health Care Business. Clarkson College was also one of the first institutions in the nation to launch a Bachelor of Science in PTA degree option with the first cohorts graduating with their Bachelor’s degrees in fall 2019.

The Celebrate 50 Scholarship marks the latest effort by the College to advance their health care education offerings. The recently updated Mary E. Balkan Science Lab and brand new Interprofessional Learning Center continue to bring innovation to the College while construction on the new Clarkson Commons & Education Center is set to expand the institution’s campus. The project will bring additional multipurpose classrooms, private and group study areas, faculty offices and professional development spaces to campus and offer students more opportunities to prepare to be the best in their field.