Student Leadership Committee Update

May 2020

The Student Leadership Committee develops ways to meaningfully engage students in the chapter and in the APTA. We organize events during the school year to build leadership and value for students. Some of these include promoting student advocacy for the profession via flash action and the National Advocacy Dinner, and developing opportunities for association and community engagement to students in the Fall Mixer and Student Conference. Our mission is to grow a thriving community for current DPT and PTA students. We aim to promote student involvement and provide a unified voice in APTA and APTA Oregon in order to express views and concerns of students. We strive to foster a collaborative relationship between students and licensed clinicians to promote professional excellence both pre- and post- graduation.

Firstly, I would like to introduce the new officers:

  • Lindsey Wallace, Chief Liaison, George Fox University, SPT
  • Sydney Neumann, Core Ambassador, Pacific University, SPT
  • Michelle Spindler, SLC Secretary, Lane CC, SPTA
  • Jason Warman, SLC Treasurer, Mt. Hood CC, SPTA

This upcoming year, the SLC would like to accomplish many things. Some of our goals include, hosting events in or around the Eugene area to try and involve more students, advocating to fight the 8% Medicare cut for PT’s and 15% for PTA’s, discussing the idea of project committees within the SLC to involve more students and encouraging them to volunteer to help organize events with us; allowing students to have the opportunity to be involved with short-term, low-commitment leadership opportunities, and lastly to host monthly Xchange-style chats via FB live where we can interview a variety of clinicians in the area or involved in APTA Oregon so that students can learn more about what PTs are doing in Oregon. We hope to continue doing 30-minute luncheon meetings with each school to promote the OPTA and show value for students who do not know much about the association.

We are excited for this upcoming school year and hope to bring some new and exciting opportunities as well as continue to grow and expand old ideas!

February 2020

The Student Leadership Committee (SLC) has been quietly developing and working away during the 2019-2020 term. The fall was relatively slow paced with only one event, the Fall Mixer. This event was a huge success measured by the largest turnout of DPT/PTA students in the SLC history from all four educational entities in the state. This was a great opportunity at the beginning of the year for students and OPTA members to unite, meet, and discuss the schooling to come as well as to review similarities and differences in their education. These types of events are crucial for students, as they will all one day be colleagues in clinical practice.

            As of January 2020, the SLC has been planning the Annual Student Conference (ASC). The ASC will be hosted on February 29, 2020 from 8:45-1:00pm at George Fox University in the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program’s building. There are a total of 11 speakers who are covering the following subjects: telehealth and the application to private practice and its future in PT; Traveling PT/PTA; Group Therapy and PDPM; PT/PTA relationship best practices; and a panel of recent grads from various schools who will be offering their perspective on “what I wish I would have known before entering the real world.”  This will be a priceless experience for students; after all, it is free to attend. The goal for the ASC was to design an event to offer information and experiences to students that are not readily available elsewhere, therefore showing the importance and benefits of membership. ASC is for members and non-members of the OPTA. Registration closes on February 26, 2020 and is available on the OPTA’s website.

            The next future event will be National Advocacy Dinner (NAD). The NAD will be hosted in at Pacific University Hillsboro campus in the Atrium and HPC2 room 165 on April 16th from 6:00pm – 9:00pm.  The address is 190 SE 8th Ave, Hillsboro, OR 97123. 6-7pm will be dinner and then 7-8:30pm will be speakers, which will include a Q & A panel. The budget will cover food and speakers for this event. The current SLC will be hosting this and will be asking the incoming SLC to assist with the event to understand what it takes to run and organize such an event.

            The SLC is also providing three full scholarships for the Annual OPTA Conference valued at $100 each for $300 total. The application deadline is set for 2 weeks before the conference in order to allow SPTs and SPTAs of the committee to review and award these monetary scholarships. These applications are available on the OPTA website.

            The current SLC term is close to an end. The new SLC applications are open on the OPTA’s website until February 23, 2020. The positions are being advertised in several ways: 1) the APTA value talks, which are being given by Scotti Gambo, SPTA as part of her role as the Core Ambassador to the National Branch, which are being given at every school this month, 2) via emails, 3) via word of mouth marketing through face-to-face interactions. During the 2019 application season, there were a total of 4 applications filed. We hope to greatly increase the interest in the SLC positions for the upcoming year. The current SLC will review and vote on the applicants who will be awarded the SLC positions. This concludes the event and activity updates.

The following section of this update is about the future of the SLC. The SLC is a 5-year-old entity. It is still growing and establishing its structure. One goal of mine as the Chief Liaison of the SLC is to build a better handoff and set of guidelines for the oncoming Committee members. I have had lengthy discussions on how to improve the value of the SLC with Christina Howard (current Chair) and Jeremy Hilliard (current Chair-Elect), which have proved to be productive. An important product of these conversations has been to create a face-to-face handoff at the Board of Directors meeting in Portland on April 4, 2020 with the current SLC, the oncoming SLC, and Christina Howard and other board members; it will be a valuable time to discuss expectations, structure, communication, etc. This is one way that we will start the oncoming SLC off better than was done previously. Another way that we plan to aid in the future of the SLC is to create unofficial positions such as “SLC advisors” for previous SLC members such as myself who will be contactable by each years SLC if they have questions from experienced leaders. The SLC will also be incorporated into the Membership Committee which will allow for further coordination and aid within the OPTA. Details on these plans to move forward are still in the works, but I will be leaving my role here in the OPTA satisfied and confident that the 2019-2020 SLC has left the group better than when we inherited it nearly one year ago.

If you would like to contact me, please use the email: [email protected]. Special thanks to my fellow SLC members, Jeremy Hilliard and Christina Howard, for all their hard work and ongoing support.

We are always looking for different ways to get students and recent graduates involved, resolve issues with creative solutions, and move our profession forward.  It takes a team effort, and the OPTA has been a great partner in effective collaboration. 

General Updates: By Peter B. Cain, SPT
Committee Members: Peter Cain, SPT GFU Chief Liaison; Scotti Gambo, SPTA Hood River C.C. Core Ambassador; Sydney Zamora, SPT Pacific U. Treasurer; Kayla Rodneau, SPTA Lane C.C. Secretary 

July 2019

Student Leadership Committee Meeting
July 1st 2019
7:30pm-8:15pm VIA: Zoom

Event Dates:

  • Fall mixer (picnic). When: Discussed September 21st 2019. where: TBA. Catering: undecided. Budget: ?. Plan for SLC to come up with activities for the event: 3 legged race, PT trivia, egg on a spoon walk? To be continued at next meeting.
  • Advocacy Dinner. When: TBA. Where: Pacific University
  • OPTA Student conference. When: Spring 2020. Where: GFU or PU


  • Improve communication: reply to every SLC member email, just an acknowledgement will do.
  • Scotti mentioned a specialist PTA to do a power point presentation for both PTA programs, Kayla will discuss with Christina H., PT, when would be a good time for this presentation to take place. To be continued.
  • Google doc goals: Peter sent out to SLC members via email.
  • Literature Review: Peter’s envision of an educational opportunity for PT/PTA professors, professionals, or retired professionals in the field of PT to present a recent article in an online meeting presentation to PT and PTA students that will be invited via email with a ZOOM link. This will take place once a month from October 2019 to April 2020. Discussed budgeting for ZOOM pro on 4 devices. To be continued.
  • PTA spark note: ?
  • Decision on Sydney to take treasurer position, Kayla to take Secretary position on SLC.

Next SLC Meeting: Early August
Location: Via ZOOM

March 2019

The OPTA Student Leadership Committee celebrates the beginning of its 5th year with the initiation of their 2019-2020 committee members. With roots, deep in representing and fostering relationships between Oregon DPT and PTA students, we look forward to the impact and contribution these passionate and inspiring student leaders will have on their mission statement during their term.

2019-20 Student Leadership Committee

  • George Fox University - Peter Cain, SPT (Chief Liaison)
  • Pacific University - Sara Servi Rattigan, SPT
  • Mt. Hood Community College - Scotlyn Gamboa, SPTA
  • Lane Community College - Kayla Rondeau, SPTA

Core Ambassador (Mt. Hood Community College) – Scotlyn Gamboa, SPTA


Student Leadership Committee: Fosters interaction between the OPTA, SPTs and SPTAs throughout Oregon. Represents the interests of students in Oregon and provides an opportunity for leadership development and professional engagement.
Looking for students who are: Passionate, engaged, creative and energetic.

Contact: Peter Cain   [email protected]