CTC expands in 2019 to offer popular program in physical therapy


Ethan Hart

Andrea Poffinberger teaches the Sports Medicine class about concussion protocol.

by Ethan Hart and Braden Weinel

Interested in studying physical therapy? Starting next year, the Frederick County Career and Technology Center (CTC) will be offering a new physical therapy and rehabilitation program for sophomores, juniors, and seniors. This new program will expose students to careers in occupational therapy, kinesiology, athletic training, and, of course, physical therapy.

This is a great opportunity for students who are interested, as physical therapy is a booming field. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in physical therapy will increase by 28% between 2016 and 2026.

CTC offers many courses that prepare students for careers. Some of the programs offered include Culinary Arts, Carpentry, Television, and Multimedia Production, Welding, and more. At Linganore, there are 75 students who attend CTC.

Supervisor Dr. Kristine Pearl and FCPS received a Maryland Career and Technology education innovation grant for the new program coming in the fall of 2019.

She said “We are currently working with local physical therapy offices to refine our curriculum and the materials of instruction needed for the course. Many PT offices are reaching out and asking to partner with us by providing student placement for the internship experience.”

Sophomore Rebecca Marakovitz has already applied for the new program at CTC. She has been interested in physical therapy ever since she tore her ACL last spring. She wants to eventually go into a physical therapy career and believes that PT program at CTC will help her tremendously.

Marakovitz said, “I decided to apply for the program because I think it would be a good chance to start learning early so that I can get ahead before going into college.”

There will be four types of physical therapy-related courses for students. The first two courses are Foundations of Medicine and Health Science and Structure and Functions of the Human Body, which are introductory courses. The third course is Physical Rehabilitation, which teaches students about occupational therapy, physical therapy, athletic training, and kinesiology. Students who complete this course will receive a certificate through the National Strength Professionals Association (NSPA). The last course is an internship where students will work with local physical therapy offices or with the athletic trainers in high schools.

Physical therapy is already a popular field of study among Linganore students. This new program would be very beneficial to students hoping to further explore the career path. For those who have an interest in athletic training or occupational therapy, Linganore offers a sports medicine class, taught by Andrea Poffinberger.

In the sports medicine class, students learn about bones, muscles, and joints. They are taught how to treat sports-related injuries such as sprained ankles, dislocated shoulders, and concussions. The students also learn about first aid and CPR.

In addition to the sports medicine class, students who are interested in the physical therapy field can participate in internships. Senior Maggie McCrossin has an internship at Pivot in Damascus. McCrossin had to go through physical therapy when she tore her ACL two years ago. Since then, she has been determined to help others recover from their own injuries.

“I know how hard it is to go through physical therapy. I wanted to help others get back to how they were before the injury,” said McCrossin.

McCrossin plans to attend Frederick Community College for one year and then transfer to the University of Delaware, focusing on physical therapy and healthcare.  McCrossin said that if she had another year in high school, she would have been interested in applying for the new physical therapy program at CTC.

To apply for this new program, students can go to the Frederick County Public Schools Career and Technology Center’s home page and fill out an online application.