May 29 2014

Poff, Casey

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Professional Goal Statement

Upon graduating from the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at UNC Chapel Hill, it is my hope to work as a pediatric physical therapist in North Carolina.  I would like to be a well-rounded pediatric physical therapist, treating children with neuromuscular disorders and/or orthopedic injuries.   My aspirations include participating in a residency program a few years down the road, becoming a Pediatric Clinical Specialist (PCS), participate in relevant continuing education courses and workshops to further my knowledge and expand  my intervention library, and eventually be a lead/senior therapist at a multidisciplinary pediatric clinic.

Career Plan

  • Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science from the University of North Carolina – Wilmington (2011)
  • Doctor of Physical Therapy from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill (2014)
  • Licensure as Physical Therapist in North Carolina (2014)
  • Experience in acute or outpatient pediatric setting in the Triangle area with good mentorship opportunities (2014-2016)
  • Become a clinical instructor (2016)
  • Fellowship/Residency in Pediatrics (2016-2017)
  • Take/pass Pediatric Clinical Specialist Exam (2017)
  • Private Practice Pediatrics (2017-2022)
  • PT in the school system or lead PT in outpatient clinic (2022-2030)
  • Continue as a clinician & teach part time in a PT program (2030-retirement)

Throughout all of the above, it is my goal to maintain my APTA membership, and take relevant continuing education courses/certification classes to stay up-to-date with the latest evidence and expand my clinical treatment “library”.

*Bold = accomplished.

Self Assessment


  • general knowledge of normal development, a wide range of diagnoses in pediatrics, and outcome measures used in pediatrics
  • 20 weeks of clinical experience in outpatient pediatrics (neurological disorders and orthopedic injuries)
  • flexible and open to continuously learning from colleagues and expanding my knowledge, techniques, and intervention library.
  • exposure to a variety of other pediatric clinical settings: school system, NICU, Special Infant Care Clinic, Myelomeningocele Clinic, aquatics, acute care, CIMT summer camp, therapeutic horseback riding, and hippotherapy.
  • Performed extensive research on the treatment and management of myelomeningocele
  • Presented capstone project on “The Treatment and Management of Spina Bifida” during the UNC PT Outreach Service Learning Trip to Guatemala.
  • Experience with casting and fitting for orthotics

Areas for Professional Development:

  • Need stronger background in inpatient pediatrics and pediatric physical therapy in the school system
  • Would benefit from continued mentorship upon entering the career
  • Need to continue expanding my working knowledge of less common diagnoses seen in pediatrics
  • Need to continue working on my ability to educate my patients and their caregivers about their diagnoses, appropriate home programs, ways to self-manage their disability, how to be a self-advocate, etc.
  • Would benefit from more in depth training on equipment/orthotic/wheelchair modification and fittings.
  • There is always room to learn and improve in all areas–this is one of the most exciting things about our profession!


1. Prepare, sit for, and pass the board exam to become a licensed physical therapist in the state of North Carolina.

2. Graduate with my DPT from UNC – Chapel Hill.

3.  Obtain a job as a pediatric physical therapist with mentorship opportunities.

4.  Participate in a fellowship or residency program to further my knowledge and experience in pediatric physical therapy.

5. Pursue continuing education opportunities and continue to learn and grow as a pediatric physical therapist.

Specific Strategies

  • Develop a plan of study for the licensure exam and abide by my self-set deadlines.
  • Develop and maintain professional, working relationships with mentors and clinicians in the area.
  • Seek job opportunities in the area that are relevant to my clinical interest and meet my mentorship needs.
  • Seek opportunities for professional development, including exposure to different environments and diagnoses, and continuing education courses relevant to my clinical interests and needs.

 Course Plan for Clinical Core, Electives, and Doctoral Project


  • I took this course in order to further expand my knowledge of developmental disabilities throughout the life course and the multiple aspects of care involved.  PHYT 864 helped to better prepare me for a potential career in pediatric physical therapy.


  • I participated in this course in order to gain a more in depth knowledge of the assessment and intervention options available (as supported in the latest evidence) to treat children with various diagnoses.


  • During this course, I completed a review of the literature and formulated an evidence table on the following PICO question:  “In children ages 3-10 with the diagnosis of myelomeningocele, is functional skills training more effective than focused strengthening exercises for increasing functional independence?”  The results of this research would later be used as part of my capstone project.


  • Traveled to Guatemala with a group of students, professors and practicing clinicians to work in collaboration with Guatemalan physical therapists and physical therapist students in a hospital, school, and outpatient clinic.


  • My capstone project consisted of both a research and teaching component.  On the service learning trip to Guatemala, I presented a hands-on, interactive session on the treatment and management of myelomeningocele.  For more information, and/or a copy of my handouts and PowerPoint presentation, click here.

Reflective Statement

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time as part of the UNC PT family these past 3 years!  I have developed a solid foundation of knowledge, skills, and clinical reasoning that will set me off on the right foot for beginning my career in pediatric physical therapy.  I am looking forward to entering the profession in a few short months, and am eager to continue learning and growing as a clinician for years to come.


3 responses so far

3 Responses to “Poff, Casey”

  1.   Lisa Johnstonon 24 Jul 2014 at 2:39 am


    I am so excited to see all that you have accomplished and how your interest in peds has developed over the last 3 years. I know you will be great with the kids and their families. Congrats on all your accomplishments and good luck!



  2.   Katieon 24 Jul 2014 at 2:07 pm

    Congratulations! You have accomplished so much and I am very grateful that you have a strong interest in pediatrics. The field will be stronger with you as a part of it! Best of luck in all that you do and keep in touch!


  3.   Laurie Rayon 29 Jul 2014 at 5:45 pm

    I am pleased to call you my colleague! Congratulations!! If I can assist with your desire to better understand school practice, don’t hesitate to call on me-please. You have my number/email…

    You will be a wonderful resource and support for the children and families you will serve. I am so happy for your interest in serving children.
    Best luck,


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