Congratulations to our Spring 2015 MRSc Graduates


(From left to right: Anne Pistawka and Alison Evans)

With UBC’s change to four degree conferral periods, we congratulate Alison Evans and Joanna Zervas who graduated officially in February 2015, and Adam Cornett, Anne Pistawka and Dr. Tarrah Sloan joined them as MRSc alumni in May 2015. Like others before them the pace of their studies differed with some opting for part-time studies and one completing her degree full-time (15 months) studying from a distance within Canada, or from Europe and Australia. Alison, Adam and Anne chose the MRSc research option, while Tarrah and Joanna completed the course-based MRSc

‘Research’ Grads…

Kinesiologist, and private Clinic Manager, Adam Cornett from Victoria met his annual continuing education credits work requirement through his MRSc. “I chose to pursue the MRSc as I am required to complete annual continuing education credits—I saw this coursework as great value in completing these credits while pursuing university-level education an continuing to work full-time.” Committed to ensuring optimal outcomes for patients and providing evidence of such outcomes, Adam chose to research approaches to Facilitating Completion of Outcome Measures in Private Practice Physiotherapy.

Physical therapist, Alison Evans applied to the program from Ontario, then journeyed to Europe, back to Canada and back to Europe in the course of her studies. When she shared, “my clinical passion is heart failure (HF)” it was not surprising that she opted to explore Perspectives on Physical Activity in Older People with Heart Failure. Of the impact of her studies on her work and colleagues, she explained, Because of my Master's work, we have made several changes at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute to better meet the needs of patients with HF. Physiotherapists have modified their approach to in-patient education, new out-patient cardiac rehabilitation programming has been implemented and we have improved collaboration on HF initiatives within our institute.”

UBC BSc (PT) graduate, Anne Pistawka links ‘Mid-Career Renewal’ and the MRSc in the Spring 2015 UBC Department of Physical Therapy Newsletter. New insights also came from her MRSc workplace research on Managing Cardiovascular Risk Factors After Acute Coronary Syndrome: Rural Perspectives. A mother of 4 she found, “The greatest challenge was the final project and travelling to outlying communities to speak directly with the (research) participants. The time, organization and considerations to make this happen were more than I anticipated. As well, the time to analyze the significant amount of data generated was both challenging and rewarding. It was well worth (it). As I tell my kids all the time, the harder it is the more you will learn and benefit….”

Course-Based Grads…

Ontarian and Chiropractor, Dr. Sloan was the first MRSc student to complete 27 of the 30 credits required for the MRSc in 12 months, and graduate in 15 months. The majority of learners choose to study at a slower rate to blend their studies with full-time work, and personal and family demands. A benefit of the MRSc is being able to complete the MRSc in as little as 8 months or up to 5 years -- learners choose a study plan that fits their needs.

Originally from BC, Joanna Zervas now offers exercise and fitness programs at a multi-service health program in Melbourne, Australia. When asked about the impact of her MRSc studies on her work, colleagues and the way she approaches practice, she says: “I am much more open to accepting others learning styles, and the important image I project of myself as a leader. Also, when networking with other practitioners (chiro/massage/GPs/Physio) I have more confidence in understanding their daily practice which in turn helps me prove my skills, and how I can help their clients with them.”