105_EclipseLabSHRSIn May 2022, the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences (HRS) in The Ohio State University’s College of Medicine, handed out diplomas, advanced degrees and certificates to its largest graduating class in the school’s 56-year history. For some, this milestone marked the beginning of health-related careers and for others, career advancement in medicine, athletic training, dietetics and nutrition, physical therapy, occupational therapy, dentistry and other fields.

HRS boasts multiple academic programs that are ranked in the top 10 in the nation for their academic achievements and student outcomes, including the Occupational Therapy Doctorate and the Doctorate of Physical Therapy programs, which have a 100% pass rate on national certification exams and rank in the top 10% of programs nationwide.

These impressive achievements only tell part of the story. Much of the school’s success boils down to foundational and practice-based learning provided by exceptional faculty, many of whom serve in prominent positions in national leadership in the profession. This inspires everyone in the school to service.

Since opening in 2016, the school’s student physical therapy clinic has offered 1,242 treatment sessions to community members who would have not otherwise received physical therapy treatment. By volunteering in the clinic, students put their didactic knowledge into practice in a supportive environment, while serving a diverse patient population. Board members, mentors and physical therapists guide the students through new experiences, such as working with language interpreters and non-English speaking patients. One student says, “this helped me appreciate the role that health care providers play both in our own culture and other cultures.”

22 Academic programs

4 Certificates

3 Minors

  • Aging
  • Integrative Approaches to Health and Wellness
  • Medical Laboratory Science

8 Undergraduate

7 Graduate

2022 U.S. News & World Report Rankings

  • Health Sciences – No. 7 Best Online Bachelor’s Program
  • Doctorate of Physical Therapy – No. 9 Best Physical Therapy Program
  • Occupational Therapy Doctorate – No. 13 Best Occupational Therapy Program

2021-2022 Milestones

  • Deborah Larsen, PhD, PT retired after 32 years of exemplary service to Ohio State, serving as the school’s director for the last 17 years.
  • Amy Darragh, PhD, OTR/L, FAOT, was named as the interim director for HRS.
  • The Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion was created to strengthen HRS’ commitment to foster a diverse and equitable community of learners.
  • The International Research Council on Biomechanics of Injury awarded Gretchen Baker, PhD student, with the Murray Mackay Young Researcher Award, which encourages young researchers to make contributions to the field of crash injury research, biomechanics and vehicle safety.
  • Emily Patterson, PhD, was awarded $1.06 million in funding from the DARPA Edge Program – Enhancing Design for Graceful Extensibility (EDGE) to provide human factors design to study the effectiveness of autonomous vehicles when they must perform outside the bounds of what they were designed for.
  • Faculty and students from the IBRC participated in the annual International Research Council on Biomechanics of Injury conference. Mandy Agnew, PhD, Yun Kang, PhD, Randee Hunter, PhD, and Angela Harden, PhD, each won best presentation in their section. IBRC faculty and students were co-authors on nine papers and short communications — the most of any university in their field.
  • Holly Estes Doetsch, MS, RD, was selected as Ohio’s 2022 recipient of the Outstanding Dietetics Educator Award.
  • Monica Robinson, MS, OTR/L, OTD, was elected as a distinguished fellow of the National Academies of Practice in Occupational Therapy.
  • The Respiratory Therapy Program received the prestigious President’s Award for Excellence in Credentialing Success from Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care.
  • HRS will host the Occupational Therapy Summit of Scholars, the pre-eminent scientific meeting in the field, at Ohio State in June 2023.
  • Chris Taylor, PhD, RD, LD, received the Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior’s Mid-Career Achievement Award.
  • Five Physical Therapy faculty members hold national leadership positions: Tonya Apke, PT, DPT, is president of the Ohio Physical Therapy Association; Susan Appling, PT, DPT, PhD, is vice president on the APTA board of directors; John Buford, PT, PhD, serves on the board of directors of the American Council of Academic Physical Therapy; John DeWitt, PT, DPT, serves on the APTA nominating committee; and Laura Schmitt, PT, PhD, is president of the APTA Academy of Research.
  • Two Occupational Therapy faculty members hold national leadership positions: Carmen DiGiovine, PhD, ATP/SMS, RET, is the president of the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America and Erika Kemp, OTD, OTR/L, BCP, is inaugural chair of the doctoral capstone coordinators on the Academic Leadership Council for the American Occupational Therapy Association.