Dec 03 2020

Hite, Ashley

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Professional Goal Statement

I aspire to be a physical therapist who makes a difference in the lives of all of my patients by selflessly serving my community and providing compassionate, unbiased, and high quality care.  My goal is to be an advocate for my patients by demonstrating encouragement and hope, fostering independence, diminishing fears, and walking with my patients through any obstacle.  I hope to empower each child to push beyond barriers and achieve their goals; serving as an advocate, resource, and promotor for the families and communities I am a part of.  As a physical therapist I will strive to approach every patient from a holistic view, taking into account the whole person when implementing a treatment plan.  I plan to stay committed to evidence-based practice and seek every opportunity to further my education while upholding patient centered care.  Upon graduation from UNC, I hope to be knowledgeable in multiple clinical settings, but specifically to work as a pediatric physical therapist and become a Pediatric Certified Specialist.  I also have a strong passion for teaching others and hope to become a clinical instructor and serve as adjunct faculty at a DPT program in North Carolina.


Career Plan 

Past Accomplishments 

  • May 2018: Graduate from Lenoir-Rhyne University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Health and Exercise Science as well as a minor in psychology
  • August 2018: Enrolled in UNC Chapel Hill Doctor of Physical Therapy Class of 2021

Clinical Rotations

  • Fyzical Balance and Physical Therapy (outpatient orthopedics and pelvic health, underserved population – Asheville, NC)
  • Novant Forsyth Medical Center (Cardiac Intensive Care Unit and Neonatal Intensive Care unit – Winston-Salem, NC)
  • CompleatKidz (Outpatient Pediatrics – Charlotte, NC)
  • North Carolina Children’s Hospital (Acute Pediatrics and Neonatal Critical Care Unit – Chapel Hill, NC)

Elective Courses

  • PHYT 880 Child and Family Assessment and Intervention
  • PHYT 870 Integrated Clinical Experience in Outpatient Neuro at UNC Faculty Practice
  • PHYT 800 Independent Research study with Dana McCarty
  • PHYT 800 Teacher Scholar for Motor Development and Human Movement Across the Lifespan Course
  • PHYT 965 Sports Performance

Doctoral Capstone Project

  • Advisor: Dana McCarty, PT, DPT, PCS

Professional Development

  • APTA NC Community-Service Project Committee
  • Student Physical Therapy Association Networking Chair
  • Research Assistant UNC Department of Human Movement Science

Future Goals

  • July 2021: Pass the Federation of State Board Physical Therapy Examination
  • August 2021: Graduate with Doctorate of Physical Therapy from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • August/September 2021: Obtain employment as a licensed pediatric physical therapist
  • 2022-2025: Apply for Pediatric Residency Program or sit for PCS
  • 2023: Begin taking courses to become a credentialed clinical instructor
  • Long-term: be able to serve as an adjunct professor at a NC DPT program



  • Effective communication with patients, clinicians, and other members of the medical team
  • Developing strong patient and caregiver rapport with individuals from a variety of cultures, backgrounds, and ages
  • Time management and ability to manage a healthy work-life balance
  • Creativity with developing interactive and engaging interventions
  • Motivation and drive for continual growth and extra-curricular involvement
  • Strong professionalism, time management, and organizational skills
  • Personal experience in a wide variety of clinical specialties including pelvic health, outpatient pediatrics, multiple critical care units, acute pediatrics, and neonatal critical care unit care

Areas for Development

  • Understanding reimbursement, billing, and insurance
  • Continuing to dive deeper into the literature and apply the most up-to-date evidence-based practice for treating patients
  • Involvement in advocacy for the profession at the state and national level
  • Obtain a larger repertoire of manual skills

Career Objectives 

  • Graduate from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with my Doctorate of Physical Therapy Degree in July 2021
  • Pass the National Physical Therapy Licensure Exam in July 2021
  • Obtain employment as a pediatric physical therapist in August 2021
  • Become a Pediatric Certified Specialist (PCS) by August 2024
  • Become a clinical instructor by august 2023

Specific Strategies 

  • Develop and follow schedule to study for the July NPTE while on final clinical rotation
  • Complete general course work for graduation from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Seek out continuing education to increase knowledge in specific fields of pediatric and neuromuscular therapy
  • Maintain APTA membership and attend annual APTA Combined Sections meeting for continuing education
  • Develop strong mentorship in the field of pediatric therapy
  • Maintain relationships with faculty, classmates, and other professionals to broaden my professional and community network
  • Take classes to become a certified clinical educator
  • Seek out community service opportunities

Product Examples

  • Critically Appraised Topic: An analysis of the current literature surrounding infant cranial molding in premature infants born <32 weeks’ gestation when a regimented positional protocol is implemented
  • DMD Come Swim With Me: A community-based program proposal designed to offer both holistic education and evidence-based interventions in an accessible, community-centered way to improve the physical, respiratory, and overall quality of life in boys with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.
  • Annual PT exam:  Designed for adolescent female athletes who are at risk, currently have, or have previous had Female Athlete Triad. Outlines and provides evidence-based clinical reasoning for a preventative, annual screening exam.
  • Foundations Physical Therapy: Business plan for a pediatric and pelvic health clinic in North Carolina.
  • DEI Reflection

Reflective Statement 

It was always a dream of mine to pursue my Doctor of Physical Therapy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and I feel very blessed to have had this opportunity.  These past three years have been filled with many challenges, but each challenge has pushed me to grow as an individual and as a professional.  While pursuing this degree, I have learned the power of adaptability, dedication, commitment, and developed a passion for serving patients, their families, and the greater community.  I have learned that the quest for clinical expertise is a continuous challenge that pushes us to grow, change, and adapt throughout time.  This is one reason I love physical therapy! There will always be something new to learn, new research and interventions to explore, and no two patients will ever present the same. This forces us to constantly progress as clinicians and allows no room for complacency.

As I graduate of UNC, I hope to work as a pediatric physical therapist. When I began pursuing my Doctorate of Physical Therapy at UNC-Chapel Hill, I knew I enjoyed various aspects of working with the pediatric population.  I knew I loved the innocence, individuality, and innovation that children bring into the clinic.  Thanks to my background in athletics and coaching, I also enjoy and value working with the entire family unit and how the scope of pediatric physical therapy services extend further than the time spent in the hospital or clinic.  I also love how pediatrics presents the opportunity to work with a variety of specialties.  In one day you can see patients with neurological, genetic, orthopedic, pelvic health, oncological, and many other conditions.  Pediatrics always keeps you on your toes, allows you to form special relationships with both parents and families, and constantly presents the opportunity for growth as a therapist.

UNC is so special in that we have the privilege of learning from the best professors, clinicians, and researchers in the field of physical therapy.  I will be forever grateful for having had the opportunity to learn from, work with, and get to know so many wonderful individuals.  UNC has also presented the gift of not only many great classmates, but also some of the best friends and supporters.  I cannot wait to see all of the incredible things everyone accomplishes.  Further, I have been fortunate to have many wonderful clinical rotations across the state of North Carolina that have pushed me to grow as a generalist and provided excellent specialty knowledge as well.  I have had the opportunity to explore everything from pelvic health to pediatric intensive care (PICU) and neonatal critical care (NCCU), and I extremely grateful for these experiences.  Chapel Hill has become home, and I want to thank every professor, classmate, and clinical instructor for their continued help and support throughout this journey.  It is always a great day to be a Tar Heel!

One response so far

One Response to “Hite, Ashley”

  1.   Lisa Johnstonon 02 Jun 2021 at 2:11 pm

    Ashley: Congrats! Great job on your portfolio and really on all that you have done over the last 3 years. You have always come to the hard work with optimism and hard work. You should be proud of what you have to show for your efforts. Good luck to you! Lisa


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