Alumni Magazine

FAL-WIN 2018

The alumni magazine for Franklin Pierce University.

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PHYSICAL THERAPY Cleland is at home in his office at Franklin Pierce University in the Manchester Center, where the Doctor in Physical erapy (DPT) program is housed. e historic building is a converted textile mill, and artifacts and photographs of laborers and equipment from its industrial past hang in the hallways. Cleland's desk sits under a towering exposed-brick wall, covered with framed degrees and awards. Cleland is an example of what can happen when opportunity and inspiration meet at the right time in a person's life. A self-described "unmotivated student" at 17, Cleland dropped out of a college engineering program aer one term and went to work in construction for eight years. When a friend was injured on the job, he gave her a ride to physical therapy and observed her treatment over the following weeks. He was fascinated and arranged to shadow physical therapists on the job until he knew for certain this was where his passion lay. A Respected Colleague, A Trusted Mentor With characteristic drive, Cleland threw himself into catching up academically so he could enter a Master in Physical erapy program at Notre Dame College in Manchester. ere he met Dr. Jane Walter Venzke, dean of health sciences and a passionate advocate for the field, who recognized that same passion and gi for pedagog y in her student. In Venzke, Cleland found the mentor who would unlock and inspire his potential. Venzke offered Cleland his first teaching position at Notre Dame College aer he completed his doctorate in physical therapy. When the college closed in 2002, the physical therapy program was acquired by Franklin Pierce, and Venzke became associate dean of graduate studies. Venzke brought Cleland with her to Pierce as a full-time faculty member, a remarkable opportunity three years out of school. He worked with Venzke to build the curriculum for the DPT program, which launched in 2007. Pierce's DPT program is a tight-knit, collaborative team of faculty and staff, focused on helping each student and each other reach their potential. Dr. Mary Palaima, DPT program director, explained that all DPT faculty members are engaged in research and all are committed to giving students professional opportunities that include attending conferences and presenting research. A valued mentor and colleague on the team, Cleland is a world-renowned expert in his field. "Josh is a joy to work with," said Palaima. "He is generous about sharing information and making sure faculty are doing the best work we can do with students. It's our job to make sure he doesn't get a big head." Dr. Maria Altobello, dean of the College of Graduate and Professional Studies, said, "For the past 15 years, I have seen [ Josh's] devotion and enthusiasm for the physical therapy profession. He is well respected by our faculty and our students. Yet behind all those awards and accolades, I have the pleasure of working with a down-to-earth individual who is humbled by all these recognitions. Josh is without a doubt a wonderful ambassador, not only for our Doctor of Physical erapy program but for Franklin Pierce University." Students and colleagues say that the willingness to help anyone, from the newest member of the team to the most distinguished colleague in the field, is Cleland's essence. Dr. Paul Mintken, a professor at the University of Colorado at Denver, met Cleland when they did their fellowship in manual therapy together at Regis University. "Josh had only been a physical therapist for six years. He was a new faculty member and he already had about 40 publications," said Mintken. "He bent over backwards to help me get started in research. He is selfless in all his activities. He has no ego." To date, Cleland has published over 170 peer-reviewed articles and five textbooks used in physical therapy and in medicine and delivered hundreds of professional presentations at dozens of conferences internationally. He is recognized as the leading expert in the country in orthopedic manual physical therapy. Because his scholarly work is widely distributed and frequently cited, he is regularly called to testify in court proceedings when manual treatment I carry all of my past students with me. They have influenced me so much both professionally and personally over the years. It is easy to be a good teacher when you have great students. — JOSH CLELAND 26 PIERCE FALL / WINTER 2018

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