Julia Chevan is ACAPT's Treasurer and Chair of the Department of Physical Therapy at Springfield College in Springfield Massachusetts. Her three-year ACAPT treasurer term should coincide with an achievement of a long-term goal of summiting all 46 of the Adirondack High Peaks that she chronicles with the hashtag #46by60 - and you can all guess what that 60 signifies. She's supported by a family including her spouse Patricia who is also a physical therapist and her two adult children.
Julia responded to a few questions from ACAPT:
How did you first get involved with ACAPT and why did you join/what drew you to it?
At the outset of the creation of ACAPT in 2009, I stepped up to volunteer, serving on the communication task force that created our first website, on the finance committee, and helping to found the early assurance consortium.
The vision we've created for ACAPT through our governance documents that speaks to excellence for academic physical therapy rings true for me. Academic physical therapy creates the future for our profession and I'm always drawn to engagement in visioning and advocacy organizations.
What are your top 1-3 priorities with ACAPT?
As treasurer I must prioritize the careful use of our finances, making sure that our resources are directed to the needs and the will of our membership, that means listening to and weighing the information I get from our individual members, committees, and task forces.
Beyond my role bound priority, I believe the most pressing issue facing ACAPT is stepping into a strong position as an organization with an advocacy role for academic physical therapy. That advocacy role means we should be working to address the policies that prevent us from meeting diversity, equity, and inclusion goals, the policies that result in excess student debt, and the policies that put clinics and institutions of higher education at risk.
What are the top ways your work has been affected by the pandemic – and how are you/your program adapting?
When faculty and students returned to campus after our state's shut down ended, I spoke with them about the need to be flexible and at the same time the fact that flexibility can create fatigue.
In our program, we've taught labs and lectures in tents outdoors, tested weekly, juggled the ever-changing opening and closing of clinical sites, advocated for our local community, AND maintained our academic standards throughout the pandemic. We are adapting by being flexible and by recognizing when we need to take a moment for some self or community care so that the fatigue does not set in.