DAVENPORT, IOWA (March 20, 2023) — St Ambrose University is collaborating with Loras College to offer Loras undergraduate students the option to pursue graduate study in physical therapy while completing their Bachelor’s degree at Loras. This option would allow students to complete their undergraduate degree and a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree in five-and-a-half years through a 3+2.5-year articulation agreement. In addition to offering an accelerated timeline to completing the doctorate, the agreement guarantees the top-five Loras students interviews with St Ambrose’s Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Program as part of the application process.

The St Ambrose Physical Therapy Department is comprised of a DPT program and an Orthopedic Residency program. The DPT program provides students with the knowledge and skills needed to deliver high-quality physical-therapy services and includes training in clinical decision-making and evidence-based practice, and skills to care for medically-complex patients. The DPT students learn in a person-centered and inter-professional environment with the seven other health-care programs in the College of Health and Human Service included Kinesiology, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Physician Assistant, Public Health, Social Work, and Speech and Language Pathology.

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job market for physical therapists is expected to grow much faster than average for all occupations at eighteen percent through 2029 because of aging baby boomers. St Ambrose DPT students meet this health-care workforce demand with an ultimate licensure pass rate of 100% and 100% job placement rate within one year.

St Ambrose Provost Paul Koch PhD said, “We are eager to provide this opportunity to Loras College students as we continue to build our partnership to ensure enhanced access through multiple pathways for students. We remain committed to serving the health-care needs of the region, including rural health-care, through programs such as this.”

Loras faculty are developing degree plans so students entering Loras can complete their general education requirements, major requirements, and prerequisite courses for the DPT program in their first three years as a Duhawk. Loras College students who have completed the application requirements and achieved an over-all grade-point average of 3.0 or higher will be eligible to apply in their junior year for admission to St Ambrose’s DPT program.

If accepted into the DPT program, students will transition to St Ambrose University in their fourth year and will be awarded a Bachelor’s degree from Loras after the successful completion of their first year of courses at St Ambrose. Students who successfully complete all requirements will be awarded the DPT degree from St Ambrose University at the conclusion of two-and-a-half years.

The first cohort of Loras students may apply for admission to the 3+2.5 DPT program at St Ambrose University for the fall 2024.

About St Ambrose University

Founded in 1882 by the Diocese of Davenport, St Ambrose University’s commitment to academic excellence, the liberal arts, social justice, and service is rooted in its Catholic intellectual tradition. The leading, private university is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and offers more than sixty undergraduate majors, eleven Master’s degrees, and three doctoral programs. One-hundred and thirty years since its inception, St Ambrose education remains centered on intentional, holistic, and experiential learning to develop high-impact world shapers in every field. To learn more about St Ambrose University, visit sau.edu.

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