“Why did I choose physical therapy as a career field?” Honestly? It was the path of least resistance. I didn’t know what I really wanted to do – I thought about law school, medical school, and maybe physical therapy school. None of these options really inspired me because … I didn’t want to leave college. Four years with an amazing crew of friends, soaking up every moment without much thought of the next steps. As graduation approached, I realized that most of my peers seemed confident about their next steps; I had no clue. So I decided to apply to physical therapy school because it was the “easiest” to get into and would be the “easiest” to move one from if I decided that it wasn’t for me. That was the thought process entering the doctoral program at Northeastern University.
As I navigated through my first year of graduate school, I began to see a potential career path – but not in the way I had expected. I became increasingly interested in entrepreneurialism. The idea of creating something that reflected my values within healthcare was appealing, even consuming, and I soon realized that if my future was in physical therapy, it had to be as a business owner.
I thought about this with every decision that I made from this point forward: where I worked, what opportunities I pursued, how I carried myself professionally… everything was geared toward this goal.
My path has been incredibly rewarding. I love what I do — I love helping people and having the autonomy to dictate how that happens. I love working within a neighborhood community. I love working with the Boston College community — my home away from home. The challenge has been maintaining who we are as a business while allowing for growth that supports my employees and the amazing people we serve; this is not easy. Fortunately, we have an unbelievable team that believes in our vision and commits to our mission of giving to others.
If you are thinking about a future in physical therapy, I encourage you to explore the many opportunities available. Hospitals, specialty clinics, sports teams and business ownership – all possible career paths as a physical therapist. There was no PT Club at Boston College when I was a student here but there is now – reach out, ask questions, explore possibilities. I leave the clinic every day feeling like I made a difference … not a bad feeling as I turn off the lights.
About the author: Adam Paggi graduated from Boston College in 2007 with degrees in Theology and History. He went on to graduate from Northeastern University with a Doctorate of Physical Therapy. He is a licensed physical therapist and the owner of Paggi Physical Therapy and Sports Rehabilitation in Brookline, Massachusetts. Adam is also involved with various independent research projects at Tufts Medical Center in Boston and is a published co-author in the Sports Medicine Arthroscopic Research Journal and the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. He is an adjunct faculty member in the Physical Therapy Program at Northeastern University and the Physical Therapist Assistant Program at Bay State College. In his spare time, Adam enjoys running, strength training, skiing with his wife, and spending time with his daughters.