Mercy Health Sports Medicine Symposium: UF Graduate Presents Alongside His Former Professor
Mercy Health’s 2023 Sports Medicine Symposium was held on Saturday, May 20 in Lima, Ohio. The educational event was hosted at St. Rita’s Medical Center, bringing together experts in the area of sports medicine, including University of Findlay alumnus Cody Warnecke, DPT ’18 and UF professor Angie Huber, DPT, OCS.
The event tackled topics including, “Athletic Training Ethics in the Age of COVID-19,” “Athletes and Mental Health: Breaking the Stigma,” and “Rehabilitation of the ACL Patient.” Assistant professor in physical therapy and associate chair of the Physical Therapy Bridge PTA to PT Program, Huber was honored to present alongside UF alumni. “The mission of the Doctoral Physical Therapy (DPT) Program at UF ‘is to empower students to help transform society by optimizing movement and function to improve the lives and well-being of those they serve,’” said Huber. “I think being able to stand side-by-side with alumni, presenting to other professionals, is sentiment to this mission.”
Warnecke grew up in nearby Fort Jennings, Ohio, before heading to the University of Findlay with the goal of working in health sciences. After learning about his ability to apply his knowledge of anatomy, physiology, and kinesiology to help others improve their daily function, he made the switch to physical therapy. Warnecke completed his undergraduate degree at UF, before ultimately completing his doctoral degree as well.
Looking back at his experiences at Findlay, Warnecke recalls the small classroom sizes and the hands-on learning. “Smaller class sizes naturally improve student engagement within classes,” he said. “The cadaver lab was a great learning experience, being able to learn hands-on and able to see anatomical variances from person to person was very beneficial.” The hands-on learning and one-on-one attention he received at UF, helped Warnecke get to his current role as an outpatient physical therapist at St. Rita’s in Lima.
On Saturday, Huber and Warnecke joined a handful of other professionals to educate and inform those in attendance. Huber presented on “Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome in High School and College Athletes.” Warnecke presented after Huber, focusing on “Rehabilitation of the ACL Patient,” with the hope of providing clinicians the most up to date research and treatment approaches to help athletes get back to the activities they enjoy at pre-injury levels.
Presenting as an expert in his field, alongside a former professor and a familiar face was an opportunity Warnecke took pride in. “It was an honor to present alongside Angie who was one of my former professors. She was actually one of the professors in my faculty-directed research group during my time at UF.”
Warnecke said he’s thankful for his time at UF, where he not only met his wife and created great friendships, but also received a great education. “I feel the PT program did an excellent job in preparing me and my classmates to pass the PT boards and becoming a practicing physical therapist.” Huber highlighted UF’s emphasis on experiential learning, promotion of evidence-based practices, and encouragement of social engagement for DPT students, but says it’s hard work. “The curriculum is difficult, but the faculty and staff are extremely engaged and supportive of the students, putting the students’ success first through reflective instruction.”
For more information on the University of Findlay’s DPT program, including the traditional and bridge programs, visit the Physical Therapy webpage.