Roadmap Mentorship Program
In the Roadmap Professional Development and Mentoring Program, each class of students has access to mentors who provide support in areas including career planning, academic counseling, and more. These individuals, although not the only mentors that they will have during their Feinberg tenure, are an invaluable resource to students.
Lindsay Ardiff ‘20 is an acute care physical therapist who works at Northwestern Memorial Hospital on the general medicine floors. Lindsay encounters a wide variety of diagnoses and impairments, including amputations, strokes, vestibular disorders, back pain, functional neurologic disorders, cardiovascular disease and more. She also serves as a clinical instructor for DPT students during their clinical rotations at the hospital. Since completing her undergraduate degree in Human Biology and Studio Art from the University of Virginia in 2016, Lindsay has been interested in the social factors related to health and disability. In the year before starting PT school, she worked at a non-profit K-12 school for students with disabilities. Currently, she is participating in the IL LEND program, a leadership development program designed to improve the health and well-being of individuals with disabilities. During her time in PT school, Lindsay was involved in APTA/IPTA, worked as a peer tutor, and completed clinical rotations in St. Louis, Nashville, and Belize. In her spare time, Lindsay enjoys traveling, eating good food, and riding her bike around the city.
Dorine Aziz is a Certified Lymphedema Therapist and works to treat primary and secondary lymphedema in the adult population. Her clinical background is in acute care, wound care, lymphedema and outpatient orthopedics. She initially spent her career in the acute care setting providing care to patient’s with cardiac, neurological, pulmonary, orthopedic, medical surgical, and general medical diagnoses. She also evaluated and treated acute and chronic wounds (venous wounds, arterial wounds, pressure ulcers, necrotizing fasciitis) in the acute setting. She recently made the transition to the outpatient setting treating adolescents and adults with general orthopedic conditions. In addition to being a practicing clinician, she enjoys being a clinical instructor to physical therapy students. She is excited to be a part of RoadMap, as a mentor and having the opportunity to develop relationships to aid in student development.
Courtney L. Gilbert '18, PT, DPT, attended the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign for her undergraduate degree. She later obtained her doctorate of physical therapy from Northwestern PTHMS in 2018. She then began working in outpatient physical therapy. Courtney is fond of treating the overhead athlete, concussion, vestibular impairments, and sports related injuries. She has also written for magazines such as Rehab Management. She is certified in FMS and an Emergency Medical Responder. Her interests include treating sport related injuries; however, clinically, she has treated patients with various orthopedic and neurologic presentations, not limited to, Parkinsons, CVA, low back pain, radiculopathies, etc. She is currently a full-time therapist and is in the process of becoming AIB-Certified and will be sitting for her SCS exam next year. She is excited to be a mentor for the Roadmap program to bring a diverse perspective and inspiration to future physical therapists and support NUPT students to the finish line.
Malcolm White ’18, PT, DPT, OCS, graduated with a B.A. in Psychology from Purdue University – Fort Wayne in 2014. He went on to earn his Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Northwestern University in 2018. Afterwards he completed an orthopedic physical therapy residency at Northwestern University – Shirley Ryan Abilitylab in 2019. He has since been working in outpatient orthopedics at Shirley Ryan Abilitylab for over 5-years. During that time, he has stayed involved with NUPTHMS as a tutor for students in the musculoskeletal coursework, reviewing prospective PT student applications for admissions, and serving as adjunct faculty in the Psychosocial Aspects of Human Behavior I course. Now a Senior II therapist at Shirley Ryan Abilitylab, he leads the organizational healthy equity committee, serves on the I.D.E.A (Inclusion, diversity, equity, action) Council, is leading implementation of blood flow restriction rehabilitation, and engages in research. Clinically, Malcolm enjoys treating overhead athletes, and patients with spinal and knee conditions. He has MDT (mechanical diagnosis and therapy) training and is a certified blood flow restriction rehabilitation provider. He strives to approach clinical care with a mindset of professionalism, compassion, empowerment, and service. In his free time, he enjoys playing baseball, hiking, listening to music, cooking, and spending quality time with friends and family. Malcolm is excited to be a part of the Roadmap mentoring program to aid students gain real-world perspective and facilitate them finding fulfillment in becoming successful professionals.
George Cachares '81, PT, MS, has been working since graduating from NUPT in 1981. His experience ranges from acute care, skilled nursing and rehabilitation, and management in a rehab unit of a large hospital. Most of his time (32 years) has been spent in private practice as an owner and partner. He began with a focus of outpatient orthopedics and mobility specialists with home health contracting. Seven years ago, he became part of the “FYZICAL” franchise which gave him the ability to become a Level III vestibular therapist, which is extremely rewarding work. He is serving as a board member of NUPTAA and has been a consultant with the PRD III classes over the past 10 years helping third year students develop skills in business plan proposals and presentations. As he reduces some of his clinic commitment, he has more time to ‘give back’ to the profession via NUPT programming and pro-bono community involvement. He looks forward to becoming a mentor in the current program and is motivated to give students a glimpse into the ‘real world’ of physical therapy as he has seen it on so many levels.
Cathy Curran '15, worked at an outpatient pediatric clinic in the North suburbs of Chicago, treating newborns up to teenagers with various neurologic and orthopedic conditions. Following this experience, Cathy started her own physical therapy business with a focus on outpatient orthopedics. In 2017, Cathy launched ResculPT Physical Therapy and Wellness LLC, partnering with an existing wellness clinic through the sharing of clinic space and patient referrals. The partnership was advantageous, allowing Cathy to grow her network in the local community. However, in 2020, with the COVID-19 pandemic impacting the community, Cathy identified a need for mobile, concierge physical therapy. Her current practice allows Cathy to treat patients in an environment of their choosing and has also given her the opportunity to again work with the pediatric population, in addition to adults of all ages. Cathy’s clinical experiences during her time in PT school included an outpatient pediatric clinic in Twin Falls, Idaho, an outpatient free clinic in Belize, an acute care rotation in Tucson, Arizona and an outpatient orthopedic clinic here in Chicago. Cathy is excited to be a part of Roadmap because she remembers how valuable it was for her to have access to practicing clinicians during her PT education and she loves to give back in any way that she can.
Hiral was born and raised in Des Plaines, Illinois and attended Elmhurst College for undergraduate training. He completed his Doctor of Physical Therapy at Northwestern University and was the graduating class of 2020. Hiral then pursued his orthopedic physical therapy residency at Saint Louis University-SSM Health Physical Therapy. He worked with Saint Louis University to also obtain his Foundation's Certificate in teaching. As an orthopedic physical therapist, Hiral currently works at Shirley Ryan AbilityLab. As an educator, he also teaches remotely for several courses at Saint Louis University's physical therapy program and mentors within the orthopedic physical therapy residency. Hiral loves to spend time with his family and play basketball!
Keyra Thurn '18, PT, DPT, OCS, CMTPT, graduated from NUPT in 2018 and has been a physical therapist for 4.5 years at Athletico Physical Therapy in Bucktown. She received her distinction as an Orthopaedic Clinical Specialist in 2020 and completed her certification in dry needling in 2021, receiving distinction as a Certified Manual Trigger Point Therapist. In 2022, Keyra was appointed to serve on the NUPT Alumni Board and has enjoyed giving back and getting involved in the NUPT community as an alumnus. Over the past 3 years, Keyra has also served as a clinical instructor, taking on several NUPT students throughout their physical therapy education. She has a passion for teaching and engaging with students which is ultimately what motivated her to participate in the Roadmap program. Mentorship has been an important component of her own career development and she is excited to help students find their passion and develop professionally as they make their way through the NUPT program.