WOC in PT: Samantha Jamosmos, post grad Pre-PT
Welcome! Today, for the Women of Color in Physical Therapy series, we are featuring our founder, Samantha Jamosmos. Samantha is currently a post grad Pre-PT student that is in the process of applying to PT school. She is currently working part time as a physical therapy aide in an outpatient clinic and is also finishing up pre-requisite courses at a local community college. When Samantha is not busy working or studying, she loves to travel, spend time with her family and friends, and blog. If you find yourself needing a person to talk to about the pre-PT struggle, Samantha is your gal, so don’t hesitate to reach out via social media! Without further ado, let’s meet our founder Samantha!
What moment made you decide to pursue physical therapy?
I was taking an anatomy class my junior year in high school and running cross country at the same time. My anatomy professor saw how passionate I was about the subject and encouraged me to look into physical therapy as a potential career.
Life has a funny way of bringing things into fruition because at the time, my father developed an overuse injury from running (plantar fasciitis) and he was referred to physical therapy to get help. I went with my dad to some of his appointments and observed his therapist in action and how he was able to help heal my dad of his injury. Seeing the type of impact a therapist can make on a patient’s life was encouraging enough to decide to pursue it seriously in my undergrad years.
Since, I have graduated and am currently working as a physical therapy aide in an outpatient setting!
Was there a certain challenge you had to overcome as a WOC in PT school, undergrad, and/or at a professional setting and how did you overcome it?
I didn’t really encounter any problems at all during undergrad, mostly because, fortunately, my classes were all very ethnically diverse.
Work is a different story because although diversity exists among the staff and the patients we see, I have encountered some patients that say some questionable things like “you look pretty for an Oriental” and some other things along the same context (specific things aren’t coming to mind, but you get what I mean). In my experience, I’ve only encountered this with older patients, and I understand that a generational gap exists, so what I try to do is let it slide and treat them with kindness. I also believe that if the situation is right, it can provide a great teaching moment for you to lead in. Of course experiencing these microaggressions can be frustrating, but there is nothing productive about letting those feelings brew inside, so instead just brush it off, move on, and continue to be the kind person that you are!
What advice would you give to fellow women of color trying to break into the physical therapy profession?
DO IT!! Honestly, if you are truly passionate about pursuing physical therapy and know what it takes to get there, do it! The journey to PT school is a process to say the least and it can be discouraging and rough, but if you are persistent and do everything in your power to prepare for the next step, everything will fall into place.
Also, don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t pursue PT for whatever reason (whether it be because of low GPA, GRE scores, etc) because the people that tell you that you can’t do something are the ones that couldn’t do it themselves, so why would you listen to them?!
What woman and/or women do you draw inspiration from?
My mom and literally all the women in my family, and my closest girlfriends. They are truly my biggest supporters, always lifting me up, and also keeping it 100% real with me without making me feel lesser than. I am forever grateful for their endless love and support!
In addition to being awesome, what do you like to do in your free time?
When I am not working and studying, I love to spend time creating travel, fitness, and lifestyle content for my blog, BRAIDOLOGIE. Other than that, I love spending time with my family and friends, listening to music (and having solo dance parties), binge watching Netflix, baking, reading, and doing anything skincare related! 😊
For the new readers, where can we find you on social media?
Well, not gonna lie but it was a little weird talking about myself in the third person, but it’s ok I got through it!!! I hope enjoyed reading my self interview (and I hope that it made sense).
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,