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Dustin Workinger

Hometown: Junction City, Oregon

Class of 2011

Major: Rehabilitation Science

Favorite Pirate Experience: The opportunity to volunteer with the physical therapy department at St. Joseph’s/Candler.

Best Advice: “Show up to class with a positive attitude about learning. Immerse yourself in all the subjects and see how they apply to your life and your major.”

 

A Great Field

Dustin Workinger’s interest in physical therapy started while he was serving with the U.S. Army Rangers, specializing in explosives, marksmanship and leadership development.

“My first experience with a physical therapist was in the military when my leg was getting numb,” he says. “The physical therapist told me I had an impingement and should do certain stretches. I did the exercises and the problem went away.”

After completing his four-year enlistment with the Army—which included overseas deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan–Dustin decided to pursue a bachelor’s in rehabilitation science at Armstrong, in addition to serving in the National Guard.

At Armstrong, this Honors Program student participated in a work-study program with the Veteran Affairs Office and volunteered with a number of local organizations. He also helped found the Student Veterans of America school chapter and volunteered with the physical therapy department at St. Joseph’s/Candler. The organization later offered Workinger a job as a part-time physical therapy aide, which enabled him to get additional hands-on experience before completing his bachelor’s degree.

“Physical therapy is a great field because it helps people be more active and shows them what they can do,” he says. “It’s very fulfilling.”

He is currently applying for admission to the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at Armstrong.

“It’s rewarding to help people,” he said. “If someone has a bad knee or can’t move their arm and I can help them, it’s a great feeling. It’s all about helping people maintain their quality of life.”

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