NEUROLOGIC PHYSICAL THERAPY RESIDENTS

Harris Health System NEUROLOGIC PHYSICAL THERAPY RESIDENTS

CHRISTEN JOHNSON, PT, DPT

Neurologic Physical Therapy Resident

Hometown:Perry, OK

About: Christen was first introduced to physical therapy after witnessing her grandfather’s rehabilitation from a series of falls. After seeing the potential physical therapy had to empower and positively affect people’s lives, she knew Physical Therapy was the profession for her.

Christen earned her Bachelors of Science in Exercise Science at Abilene Christian University, and then went on to earn her Doctorate of Physical Therapy at George Fox University in Newberg, Oregon. While in PT school, she discovered through her experiences at clinical rotations in a brain injury outpatient clinic and an inpatient rehab facility that she had a passion for people who had neurological conditions. Through her completion of research on the feasibility and effectiveness of a community wellness program for people with chronic stroke, Christen developed her interest for self-efficacy and community participation centered outcome measures.

Christen decided to pursue a neurologic residency at Harris Health System because of its diverse patient population, commitment to serving the under-served, and dedicated, hard-working team of therapists. After finishing residency, Christen plans to become NCS certified. She would like to pursue a clinical position that has opportunities for community education/outreach and continue research on the role of physical therapy in the community.

Hannah Bowen, PT, DPT

Hometown: Bath, NC

About: Born and raised in Eastern North Carolina, Hannah was exposed to physical therapy at 14 years old while recovering from a spinal fusion. However, Hannah’s interest to pursue physical therapy was not from her own rehabilitation, but instead from her memories of another patient in the outpatient clinic re-learning to ambulate following a cerebral vascular accident (CVA). She received her Bachelor of Science in Recreational Therapy in May of 2015 at Western Carolina University (WCU) in Cullowhee, NC and went on to pursue her Doctor of Physical Therapy at WCU, graduating in May of 2018.

While in PT school, Hannah was a graduate assistant and a supplemental instructor, tutoring students in the class below her in Neuroscience. Hannah also has a vast experience of volunteer work including: leading group exercise classes in the community for individuals with Parkinson’s disease and working at a Pro bono PT clinic. She presented her doctoral research on the impact of focus of attention strategies on seated trunk control in individuals with chronic CVA via a poster presentation at the Combined Sections Meeting in New Orleans in March 2018. Hannah graduated with certifications in LSVT BIG and Power Moves, which are exercises specifically designed to address common impairments in individuals with Parkinson’s disease.

Since her first day of physical therapy school, Hannah knew she wanted to pursue a neurologic residency. Following graduation from the Harris Health System Neurologic Physical Therapy Residency program, Hannah plans to become a board certified Neurologic Clinical Specialist. She hopes to give back to the community by organizing a local Probono clinic focusing on the needs of individuals with neurologic conditions. Hannah has been a member of the neurologic section of the APTA for the past 3 years, however, plans to seek out a more active role in the upcoming future.

Mayowa Victor Oyelam, PT, DPT

Hometown: Houston, Tx

About: Born in Nigeria, Mayowa moved to Houston, Texas during his teenage years. Upon finishing high school, he became a personal trainer and enjoyed helping clients achieve their fitness goal. Upon the realization of the limited knowledge and scope of practice that personal trainers have, Mayowa did some research and came across physical therapy. After performing observation in different settings, from inpatient rehab to skilled nursing facilities he knew this was what he wanted to spend the rest of his life doing. Mayowa earned his Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology Exercise-Science at University of Houston (Go Coogs!) and then went on to earn his Doctor of Physical Therapy degree at Texas Woman’s University (TWU) Houston, Texas.

While in PT school, Mayowa discovered his passion for working with the neurologic population after his first neurology course and was instantly hooked from there. He presented his doctoral research board presentation on “Familiarity with Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia (HSP) and Differentiation of Gait between HSP & Spastic Diplegic Cerebral Palsy” at TWU research night December 2018. Mayowa’s commitment to service, and advocacy led him to serve as TWU Student Government Association’s Treasurer, TWU Pioneer Ambassador and TWU Student Service Fee committee member. Mayowa has been an American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) member since 2016 and served as a committee member on the first ever APTA Houston Area National Advocacy Dinner.

Mayowa decided to pursue a neurologic residency at Harris Health System because of its world-renowned reputation as a teaching hospital with diverse patient population, it’s commitment to serving the under-served, and it’s dedicated, hard-working, and passionate team of credentialed therapists. After Residency, Mayowa plans to become a board certified Neurologic Clinical Specialist and a Credentialed Clinical Instructor. He would like to start a community engagement program designed to educate and empower people to make better food and exercise choices to decrease the risk of strokes and other preventable comorbidities.

Megan Whitson, PT, DPT

Hometown: South Carolina

About: Megan was born and raised in the rolling foothills of upstate South Carolina. She attended undergraduate at Clemson University (Go Tigers!) where she received her B.S. in Health Science. After graduation, she worked for several years as the Wellness Director for the YMCA of Greater Spartanburg in South Carolina. She then spent another several years running a breast cancer clinic in Charleston, South Carolina. She decided to apply for PT school when she realized that it was the perfect marriage of her two loves: fitness and medicine.

She began her PT journey at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston in 2016. Megan had the opportunity to grow as a leader in her time at MUSC through serving as the Clinic Coordinator for the CARES Clinic, a student-led, non-profit PT/OT clinic serving uninsured patients in the greater Charleston area. She also served as class Vice President and spearheaded fundraising and volunteer efforts for local non-profits dedicated to offering adaptive sports and outdoor adventure opportunities to those with mobility challenges in Charleston.

Megan fell in love with Neuro after her first neuroanatomy lecture and has never looked back. She was fortunate to spend 6 months working at a Level 1 Trauma Center at the University of Utah prior to graduation which solidified her love of Neurology. It is jer hope that residency will fast-track her growth as a Neuro clinician while providing opportunities to begin teaching and giving back to future PT’s. She is excited to work with such a diverse patient population at Harris Health while continuing to learn from a team of passionate and talented faculty and mentors. After completing residency, it is her dream to one day open a non-profit, neuro-focused physical therapy clinic in Costa Rica. Pura Vida!

NEUROLOGIC RESIDENCY GRADUATES

2011-2012

  • Winnie Powell, PT, DPT, NCS
    Texas Woman’s University
  • April Wesley, PT, DPT, NCS
    University of Texas Medical Branch

2012-2013

  • Karen Hasson, PT, DPT, NCS
    Angelo State University
  • Vanessa (Potts) Thomas, PT, DPT, NCS
    Sacred Heart University

2013-2014

  • Alexis English, PT, DPT, NCS
    Sacred Heart University
  • Zahra Kadivar, PT, PhD, NCS
    Shiraz University of Medical Sciences

2014-2015

  • Jill Jackson, PT, DPT, NCS
    Idaho State University
  • Megan Krueger, PT, DPT, NCS
    Texas Woman’s University

2015-2016

  • Alicia Danto, PT, DPT, NCS
    University of Texas Medical Branch
  • Kelsey DeLave, PT, DPT, NCS
    University of Pittsburgh

2016-2017

  • Rashi Agrawal, PT, DPT, NCS
    University of Southern California
  • Daniel Schaeffer, PT, DPT, NCS
    Emory University

2017-2018

  • Martin Castaneda, PT, DPT
    Texas Woman’s University
  • Jamie Dolley, PT, DPT
    University of South Florida - Tampa

2019-2020

  • Christen Johnson, PT, DPT
    George Fox University
  • Hannah Bowen, PT, DPT
    Western Carolina University