Apr 10 2016

Lutschewitz, Karl

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Professional Goal Statement

My goal is to become a well-rounded clinician by beginning my career as a Physical Therapist in either an acute care or inpatient setting. By doing so, I hope to continually expand my knowledge, gain experience, and grow my roots in the profession.  Ultimately, I would like to transition to home health/community

preventative programs and focus my work on neuro and geriatric populations. My lifelong career goal is to surround myself with excellent physical therapists and other interdisciplinary professionals. By seeking opportunities in positive, collaborative workplace environments in which patient centered care is highly valued, I will be able to make the most significant impact on patients. Additionally, I will be able to gain confidence and improve my skill as a clinician so that I can provide excellent care to patients.

  1. Pass licensure board exam – July 2016
  2. Doctor of Physical Therapy – University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, August 2016.
  3. Obtain employment in the Winston-Salem area– 1st PT job!
  4. Pursue Geriatric Specialist Certification – 2020
  5. Incorporate stress management techniques into therapy sessions
  6. Raise health awareness and help to implement preventative community programs – (i.e. – with local YMCA collaboration – 2025


  • Experience in multiple settings
  • Communication
  • Strong work ethic
  • Organized
  • Empathetic
  • Patient
  • Professional
  • Time management
  • Active involvement in volunteering for community events

Areas for Professional Development

  • Determining accurate time frames for patient goals/plan
  • Increasing my knowledge of interventions and progression of exercises
  • Be more active in the APTA
  • Commitment to lifelong learning through conferences and continuing education courses
  • Expansion of professional network


  1. Successfully complete final inpatient neurology clinical rotation, increasing comfort level in working with patients with acquired brain injuries.
  2. Effectively prepare for and pass the national board examination to become a licensed physical therapist. –
  3. Obtain a first job at a hospital/clinic with a mentorship program to help further my professional development. – August 2016
  4. Become credentialed by the APTA as a Geriatric Specialist – 2020

Specific Strategies

  • Obtain additional clinical skills by helping to provide care and exercises for two clients with multiple sclerosis.
  • Engage in an interdisciplinary service learning trip to help address and become familiar with social determinants of health and develop strategies to create change in communities.
  • Develop a study plan to allow me to successfully pass the National Licensure Board Exam.
  • Further research necessary steps to obtain Geriatric Specialist Certification through the APTA.
  • Actively network with local healthcare professionals to obtain additional information regarding job opportunities.
  • A specific outline of your plans for each of the clinical courses, electives, and the doctoral project. You should include information about the mentors that you think that you might need for each of the areas and if you already have a mentor in mind.  You may decide to have several projects that build upon each other, or you may decide to.  You choices will be dependent on your experience level, if you already have a defined specialty area, as well as if you are part-time or full time.  Keep in mind that projects that are linked may take more lead time to develop.

Clinical Rotations

  • Randolph Orthopedic and Sports Medicine, Asheboro, NC – Outpatient Orthopedics (Clinical Instructor: Frank Layman)
  • Frye Regional Medical Center, Hickory, NC – Inpatient Neuro (Clinical Instructor: Pam Elske-Leonetti)
  • Frye Regional Medical Center, Hickory, NC – Acute Care, mostly oncology/nephrology (Clinical Instructor: Debora Anderson)
  • Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, Winston-Salem, NC – Inpatient Neuro (Clinical Instructor: Rebecca Weant)


  • Interdisciplinary Service Learning Trip, Tyrell County, NC, 2013, 2014, 2015: This course explores healthcare in the global context and the determinants of health in vulnerable US populations with a particular focus on rural North Carolina. Each year, I was able to work with different populations and collaborate with locals to identify need.
    • 2013: Balance prevention at the local senior center
    • 2014: Promoting fitness and health to elementary school children
    • 2015: Helping to provide access through designing and helping to build a ramp for a local women unable to attend church.
  • Advanced Orthopedics: Elective course in advanced orthopedics for increased understanding of musculoskeletal tissues, orthopedic physical therapy, and PT treatment of special populations.

Product Examples

One of the great things about the program is being able to explore topics you are interested in. I am happy to be able to share a few projects that I was able to explore during my time at UNC.

  • During my second year of PT school, I had a good friend who injured her ACL playing soccer. She developed some compensatory running strategies after surgery and ended up developing an injury to the labrum of her hip, not allowing her to do the thing she loves most: run. I wanted to learn more about preventative strategies to share with future patients and friends: ACL prevention paper
  • In Health and Wellness, we began learning how the healthcare/medical model is currently changing toward more preventative care. Hypertension is a common and costly condition. It is extremely important for longevity, to find ways to help people reverse hypertension. I developed a health plan to help prevent hypertension in middle aged adults so that they can live longer and healthier as older adults: Hypertension Prevention Program
  • Neuro rehabilitation is another area of particular interest and I have been fortunate to be able to have two clinical rotations in an inpatient neuro setting. People with spinal cord injuries have a special place in my heart because I was always a risk taker growing up and identify with young male populations. During Evidenced based practice II, I researched : Critically Appraised Topic


I came home from my clinical two weeks ago, after a day of hard work, with the satisfying realization that I have made an excellent decision to pursue physical therapy as a second career. Through the years, I have learned that I have a “maximizer” personality –I want to experience all facets of a career prior to “settling down” in a particular field of expertise. One of the things I love about the field of physical therapy is that it is so wide open. Through my clinical life experiences, I have found that I enjoy working with older adults. They have so much life experience and are ubiquitous in most physical therapy settings today. I plan to use my previous life/work experience as a carpenter and accountant to develop rapport and trust in patients.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Carolina and feel lucky to have had this experience, because while the goal is important, it helps if you can enjoy the ride. I really appreciated the indepth knowledge and encouragement provided by the professors at UNC. I’ll miss going down memory lane while transitioning during powerpoints with Jon Hacke and Mike Gross’s “stand up” during lectures. I would like to thank Vicki Mercer who has provided advice and inspiration to me during our many trips to Tyrrell County, NC. Thanks also to Karen McCulloch for providing guidance and feedback for my Capstone and Carol Giuliani for telling it like it is. It has also been a pleasure getting to spend time with my fellow classmates through school, work, and play. I know they will all make amazing PTs very soon. I felt that our class got along really well and we all brought unique experiences and passions to discussions. What a fabulous experience learning and developing friendships with classmates and professors!

Most importantly, I would like to thank my wife, Amanda, the love of my life. Amanda has been so supportive and encouraging during this journey and I am super lucky.

One response so far

One Response to “Lutschewitz, Karl”

  1.   Vicki Merceron 15 Jun 2016 at 4:50 pm

    It has been a pleasure to get to know you and to work with you in the classroom and in Tyrrell County! I’ll always have fond memories of our shared visual field testing experience!

    You are going to excel as a physical therapist in whatever area of practice you ultimately choose.

    Congratulations and best wishes-



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