Apr 27 2020

Galante, Sara

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Professional Goal Statement

My professional goal is to become a well-rounded physical therapist, with the clinical knowledge and experience to treat patients holistically across a variety of settings. I have a passion for working with patients who have neurological diagnoses; however, I recognize that a patient is a whole person and will require me to have sufficient skills in all areas of physical therapy. I will consistently work to seek knowledge, provide empathy, advocate consistently, and maintain the passion I have for this profession. Upon graduating from UNC, I aspire to work in an environment that will catalyze both my personal and professional development. I also aspire to hone my passions for teaching and mentoring by introducing shadows to the field of PT, becoming an APTA credentialed clinical instructor, and eventually working as an adjunct professor at a DPT or PTA program to hone the next generation of physical therapists.

Career Plan

  • May 2016: Graduated from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a Bachelors of the Arts in Exercise and Sport Science
  • June 2016- July 2017: PT Aide and Fitness Instructor at Southwind Health and Wellness in Durham, NC
  • August 2017-August 2020: Enrolled in the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at UNC Chapel Hill School of Medicine
    • Electives:
      • Interdisciplinary Older Adult Theory and Practice (3 credits)
      • Integrated Clinical Experience with UNC Orthopedic Resident (1 credit)
      • Teacher Scholar for Musculoskeletal 1 Coursework (1 credit)
      • International Service Learning Trip to Guatemala (1 credit)
    • Capstone:
      • Bridging the Gap: Transition from Hospital to Home for SCI- Collaborative project with Austin White, SPT including peer mentor videos and literature review on patient and caregiver education
  • August 2020: Earn Doctor of Physical Therapy from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • October 2020: Sit for National Physical Therapy Examination
  • November 2020: Obtain full time employment in acute, inpatient or outpatient neurology setting
  • 2022: Become APTA Credentialed Clinical Instructor; take first DPT Student
  • 2023: Guest Lecture or assist with lab for an accredited DPT or PTA program in the triangle area
  • 2024: Plan or host an interprofessional grand rounds or other IPE opportunity within my practice setting
  • 2025: Pursue NCS Specialty Certification

Clinical Affiliations

  • Novant Matthews Medical Center (8 weeks); Mathews, NC- Outpatient Orthopedics
  • Carolinas Rehabilitation Main (8 weeks); Charlotte, NC- Inpatient Rehabilitation, SCI Team
  • Carolinas Medical Center Main (8 weeks); Charlotte, NC- Acute Care, Cardiac Team
  • Wake Med Main (8 weeks); Raleigh, NC- Outpatient Neurological


  • LSVT-BIG Certification (November 2019-2021)
  • Restorative Therapies FES Ergonomic Certificate- Introduction to RT300 Functional Electrical Stimulation Bike (April 2019)
  • Basic Life Support Provider (CPR & AED) from American Heart Association (October 2019-2021)

Professional Development

  • UNC Division of Physical Therapy- Clinical Education Work Study Student
  • UNC Division of Physical Therapy- MSK1 Student Teaching Assistant
  • UNC Office of The Provost: Interprofessional Education and Practice- Student Executive Committee Member
  • Department of Allied Health Science (DAHS): Interprofessional Education Student Committee- Chair of Student Representatives
  • Student Physical Therapy Association- Fundraising Chair, Professionalism Ceremony Chair
  • Allied Health Science Ambassadors- Former Co-President, Committee Chair



  • Ability to develop rapport with patients
  • Professional behavior with all patients, family members and colleagues
  • Adjusting communication strategies based on audience
  • Creative and functional procedural interventions and treatments
  • Providing healthy literacy friendly patient education and using teach back to ensure comprehension
  • Experience with interprofessional education and teamwork

Areas for Development:

  • Assessing and treating patients with complex neurological conditions
  • Analyzing research for validity and feasibility in practice
  • Involvement in professional advocacy through APTA and North Carolina APTA
  • Equipment recommendations, home assessments and providing letters of medical necessity for patients

Professional Objectives

  1. Graduate with my DPT from UNC in August 2020
  2. Pass National Physical Therapy Examination in October 2020
  3. Obtain a job by the end of 2020 with a mentorship program and room for professional growth
  4. Advance knowledge in areas of weakness utilizing continuing education courses (vestibular rehabilitation, manual therapy, evidence-based treatments for advanced neurological disorders [Parkinson’s, MS])

Strategies for Success

  1. Develop detailed study plan to prepare NPTE in order to achieve a passing, satisfactory score
  2. Maintain relationships with mentors, professors, previous clinical instructors and classmates
  3. Retain membership with APTA and Neurological Special Interest Groups
  4. Network and learn about other professionals to expand professional toolbox and creative problem-solving abilities

Samples of Work in DPT Curriculum

DPT Capstone: Bridging the Gap: Transition from Hospital to Home for SCI

Critically Appraised Topic: Health-Literacy Conscious Patient Education for SCI 

Teacher Scholar Presentation: Examination and Treatment of Adhesive Capsulitis with Case Study

Differential Diagnosis Presentation:  Differential Diagnosis of EDS, Hypermobility Type

Acute Care Inservice: Debunking Misconceptions of SCI

Inpatient Rehab Inservice: Shoulder Screening for Patients with SCI: Review of Appropriate Special Tests 

Reflective Statement

During my 6 years at Carolina, I cannot think of a group that completely exemplifies the idea of the “Carolina Way” as much as my classmates. I am incredibly grateful and humbled to have grown among all of them, the faculty, and fellow professional students I have crossed paths with. To me, the Carolina Way is the embodiment of dedication, excellence, and passion for improving another’s experience. Throughout the last 3 years I have become a better person because the people around me have all strived to meet a higher standard as a group. I have witnessed our compassion during our first semester, pooling our funds to buy a treadmill for a community member who needed exercise. I have also seen it recently during one of the most challenging times in my life, stranded in Guatemala, as everyone worked tirelessly to help their friends and colleagues. It is because I had these experiences that I am a more compassionate and resilient provider.

The opportunities and experiences I had during this program gave me some of the best life-long mentors I could hope for with professors, clinical instructors and classmates. I have grown as a student and life-long learner, which will prove invaluable as I strive to become a teacher and a mentor. My goals have developed, and I have found other passions that will direct my career in the future and improve the future health of my patients and colleagues. I am proud to be a Tar Heel and future Physical Therapist, and I will continue to advocate for this program and this profession at every opportunity.

2 responses so far

2 Responses to “Galante, Sara”

  1.   Lisa Johnstonon 30 Jun 2020 at 9:42 pm

    Sara: It has truly been a pleasure to get to know you over the last 3 years. It is also very exciting to see some examples of your hard work. You have been busy! I enjoyed working along side you during your work study position this past year also. Good luck and nice job on the portfolio! Lisa


  2.   Michael Lewekon 01 Jul 2020 at 9:21 am

    Sara: Thank you for sharing all of your accomplishments and your goals for the future. You are well equipped to achieve your goals and I wish you the the best. It was a pleasure to work alongside you this past year. Best of luck with all future endeavors. You will do great.


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