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A Siouxland University Looks to Begin A New Academic Program

Officials there are now creating a curriculum for a Physical Therapy program.
Sioux City, IA (ABC9 News) - Briar Cliff University in Sioux City maybe adding yet another department to its already growing list of academic fields.

Officials there are now creating a curriculum for a Physical Therapy Program. They say the need for this new program is at an all time high. It's something they say, they can't step down from providing.

"We believe that the work force right now requires interdisciplinary care, or multi-disciplinary care. So we need to prepare our students for that. And that's going to be something that Briar Cliff will really push forward with." says Prof. Patrick Cross with Briar Cliff university.

This program will include a three year course for students to take. That totals at about 136 credits in all. So far, the university has gone through the first step in receiving their accreditation. A representative from one of two accreditation committees, The Higher Learning Committee, has visited the campus. The other, CAPTE, till visit the school in the coming months. Together, they'll decide if the college can move forward. Professor Cross says after the H-L-C visit, he's feeling optimistic.

"I think Briar Cliff has embraced this program. They want this program. They feel it fits with the mission of where they are going with graduate school, as well as, their health sciences." ads Professor Cross.

Professionals in the field say this new opportunity shines light on an element that is greatly needed in the Siouxland area.

"Most of the people we hire, actually come from interns that we've had. That we've contacted, you know, after they've done their internship here. That we've been impressed with them, and we've called them." says Dr. Kevin Poss, Physical Therapy Specialist.

Officials with Brirar Cliff say this is a lengthy process, one that might not be complete until the year, 2018. But if accreditation is granted, students could be accepted into the program by the Fall of 2015.

After 3 years, another visit from the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education, or CAPTE, will allow them full accreditation.
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