I’m here in the PTA lab in Weiden, where UMPI’s PTA program has received national accreditation.
This vital signs monitor is just one of the features in the lab. It reads a patients heart beat, blood pressure, and EKG. Just over two years ago, none of this equipment existed and neither did the students or the program. Physical Therapist Assistant Program Director, Christopher Rolon says this accreditation is great news.
“It feels great. It’s a huge weight off our shoulders, you know we can focus on teaching one hundred percent now. I think the students are also excited that they know they can move on and take their national exams, and they don’t have to worry either about any delays,” says Rolon.
Now that the program is accredited, students who choose the PTA program have more opportunities.
“If we were not accredited, then our students couldn’t graduate and become licensed to work as a physical therapist assistant. They could still get the degree, but without the accreditation, they don’t get the licensure, which means they can’t work,” says Rolon.
This program is only the second full accreditation Physical Therapy Assistant Program available in the State of Maine.