WOC in PT: Amanda Brimmage, PT, DPT
Welcome! Today, for the Women of Color in Physical Therapy series, we are featuring Amanda Brimmage, PT, DPT. Dr. Amanda is a recent graduate of Hampton University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program. She currently works in Virginia Beach in an outpatient setting, primarily treating the neurologic population. When she is not working, Dr. Amanda runs her blog PT Passages on the side, where she shares travel, physical therapy, and lifestyle tips. Without further ado, let’s meet Dr. Amanda!
What moment made you decide to pursue physical therapy?
When I started college I was unsure of the career I wanted to pursue. I was formerly a high school athlete and knew I loved sports so I initially thought I wanted to be an athletic trainer. After speaking with a physical therapist at the church I was attending at the time, she sparked my interest in the profession. I did my research and fell in love with everything about physical therapy. I had the opportunity to shadow some great PTs in undergrad, which solidified my decision to pursue this career.
Was there a certain challenge you had to overcome as a WOC in PT school and/or at a professional setting and how did you overcome it?
I think one of the most frequent challenges I face is when staff and/or patients assume I am not a physical therapist. Some people will assume I am a PTA or CNA, some people have asked if I am “the real thing”, and some just act extremely shocked that I have my doctorate degree. It can be frustrating, but I always keep my composure, because I’m confident in my abilities as a PT.
What advice would you give to fellow women of color trying to break into the physical therapy profession?
To those applying to PT school, remember to never let fear hold you back. Getting into PT school is extremely competitive and it can honestly be discouraging. I wasn’t your average “competitive” PT school applicant. I applied with a 3.33 GPA and slightly above average GRE scores. If I can make it this far, so can you. I wrote more specific application tips here.
To those in PT school, stay encouraged. Remember to never stop learning. Let any ignorance you may encounter light your fire to become the best clinician you can be. You belong in the PT profession. You deserve to be here.
What woman / women do you draw inspiration from?
My siblings and my best friends. Seeing them fearlessly pursue their passions and professions has been great inspiration for me to follow mine. Not to mention the utmost support each one of them have given me throughout my journey.
In addition to being awesome, what do you like to do in your free time?
I love traveling and eating! Food is honestly the main reason I love to travel. You can learn so much about other cultures through their cuisine.
For the new readers, where can we find you on social media?
Thank you so much to Dr. Amanda for sharing her experience being a woman of color in physical therapy! Be sure to follow her at the social media links posted above. :)
If you are a woman of color involved in the physical therapy world, whether you are just starting as a pre-PT or a practicing PT, I would love to feature you in my WOC in PT series! Please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Stay tuned for the next series feature, we have an amazingly diverse group in the mix!
Peace, love & blessings,