Emma Christopher

Emma Christopher wants to become a physical therapist in the future. When she isn’t studying, Emma enjoys hammocking, watching reality television, hanging out with her dog, and ice skating.

Get to know Emma

  • Major: Kinesiology and health
  • Class: Junior
  • Hometown: St. Paul, Minnesota
  • Career goal: Physical therapist
  • Clubs/activities: Kinesiology and Health Club, Pre-Physical Therapy Club, athletic tutor
  • Awards/honors: Dean’s list
  • Favorite place on campus: Curtiss Hall, downstairs of Forker Building
  • Most influential ISU mentor: Warren Franke
  • Favorite class: KIN 363, Basic Electrocardiography
  • Why Iowa State: Loved campus when she toured it, felt like home

Emma Christopher aims to make a difference as a physical therapist, prepares for professional school

When Emma Christopher was in middle school she did a presentation on concussions. This led to her discovery of the physical therapy (PT) career path as a means to help people recover. After learning so much about the career, she developed an interest in it. Now a junior in kinesiology and health at Iowa State University, she is getting closer to her own career as a physical therapist.

Emma has shadowed at the McFarland Clinic at Mary Greeley Medical Center in Ames, as well as in pediatric physical therapy. She’s not entirely sure what area of physical therapy she wants to go into, and knows that it may be easier to decide after she’s completed her clinicals and gotten hands-on experience. However, she does know she has an interest in pediatrics.

“I’ve worked with kids my whole life; I used to work at a day camp and babysit, and I just feel like I really work well with kids,” she said.

Emma said that in pediatrics, you often see different things every day, and she likes the variety that the path offers.

To make her goals a reality, Emma’s first step after graduation is attending professional school. Though she’s keeping her options open, she’s interested in returning home to Minnesota to attend school.

Emma has been looking at professional schools since her freshman year, and thanks to her club involvement at Iowa State, she’s received a lot of help in the preparation process. At both the Kinesiology and Health and Pre-Physical Therapy club meetings, representatives from professional schools come and share more about their school’s options.

“They talk about their programs, which really gives you a good idea of the options you have available to you,” Emma said. “Sometimes it’s hard to know what those schools provide just by looking at their websites.”

No matter what specialty Emma focuses on or where she attends professional school, her end goal for her career will always stay the same.

“I just want to be able to help people and make a difference,” Emma said. “Everyone who comes into PT has different goals, and if I can get them to that goal or beyond, that would be amazing to see them where they want to be.”

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