Physical Therapist, PhysioBaby Physical Therapy and Wellness
Kimberly graduated from Texas A&M University before earning a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from Texas State University. She began her career at Texas Children's Hospital working on the neurodevelopmental team in both inpatient and outpatient settings, as well as working in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Kimberly recently transitioned to working at PhysioBaby Physical Therapy and Wellness, a company providing home health physical therapy. She has a strong passion for treating babies and young children with neurodevelopmental concerns. Kimberly emphasizes patient-centered care in all aspects of treatment while working closely with families to build meaningful relationships to establish the best care possible.
1. How did you find your passion for physical therapy?
I always had a passion and love for science and anatomy. I remember growing up, my mom assisted with a science program at my brother’s elementary school. She brought home a cow lung and heart one day and I was fascinated. I always excelled in science and enjoyed dissection labs in particular; the human body and how it all moved and functioned together was so intriguing. Entering college, I started out thinking I wanted to pursue athletic training and worked with Texas A&M’s football and swimming programs as a student, but there was just something more I wanted that I couldn’t explain. I shadowed an athletic trainer who was also a physical therapist and got hooked. I loved the rehab aspect and the long-term healing effects provided through physical therapy. In PT school, I fell in love with neurology and pediatrics, finding my niche in neurodevelopmental pediatric physical therapy.
2. How did attending Duchesne lay the foundation for where you are today?
Duchesne instilled a passion for learning and continuing my education through rigorous studies and academics. It fostered an environment of independence and confidence. I did not appreciate how prepared I was for higher education until graduate school when I saw how quickly I developed and established my routines for a healthy work-life balance. I had confidence in jumping into leadership roles for my PT class as well as taking on additional activities such as teaching undergraduate anatomy labs. Duchesne laid the foundation for my love of learning and desire to share my knowledge with others.
3. What is the most challenging and what is the most fulfilling aspect of your work?
The two most challenging things about my job are families and insurance. Pediatric physical therapy can be challenging because before you can help the child, you must first gain the trust of the parents. This is their baby, and they would do anything to help him or her succeed. Establish my role in the process as the patient’s advocate while working with the parents can at times be complex, but is critical to the patient’s progress. Insurance can be difficult as well when I receive denials for therapy or equipment when a child really needs access to more. The most fulfilling aspect of my job is watching children grow and develop to achieve goals they did not think were possible. It gives me so much joy to watch patients succeed and move in new ways. I love watching them become more independent and engaged in their environment.
4. What advice would you share with current Duchesne high school students?
Keep an open mind when thinking about your career. I didn't decide on physical therapy until my junior year of college. And even then, I was set on doing sports orthopedic physical therapy. It wasn't until the end of my second year of physical therapy school (at that point, 6 years post-graduation from Duchesne) that I realized pediatrics and neuro was for me. Don't feel pressured to have your life figured out immediately upon graduation from high school. You still have time. Pursue your interests, keep learning, and try new things. Get involved in something because you never know where it is going to lead you. And finally, do not be afraid to use your resources (family, friends, teachers, and mentors) to bounce ideas off of regarding your career.