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SDSU Bones Up On Physical Therapy With New Doctoral Program

San Diego State University has just introduced a doctoral program in a field that federal officials call one of the fastest growing in the nation.

San Diego State University has launched a doctoral program in physical therapy. The new program comes at a time when demand for physical therapists is extremely high.

The doctoral program in physical therapy at SDSU involves three years of instruction, lab work and clinical internships.

Marilyn Newhoff, dean of the school's College of Health and Human Services, said the program will really fill a need in San Diego.

"We have more elderly retiring here, more elderly than ever before," Newhoff pointed out. "We have individuals who are returning from Iraq or Afghanistan, who are desperately in need of physical therapy, and there just hasn't been any traditional program south of L.A."

Newhoff said there are 36 students in SDSU's inaugural class.

"Maybe we'll even increase that to 40," she said. "But that's just a maybe. We had far more applications than we could deal with this time."

Brittany Pogue is one of those who made the cut. Pogue said being a physical therapist is her dream job.

"I've just always had a fascination with the human body and how it works and how it moves, and what makes it move, what makes it work," Pogue explained. "So, that's kind of why I did physical therapy, is I get to use that knowledge every day."

The current job market for physical therapists is fantastic. And the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts demand for physical therapists will grow by 40 percent by 2020.

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