A Master of Physiotherapy from a first year’s eyes
Lindsey reflects on her first year as a Physiotherapy student
Physiotherapy students Alex and Lindsey
Roughly around October 2017, I received an email from the Graduate School of Health at UTS offering me an interview for a position to study a Master of Physiotherapy. I cried. Unlike the majority of my peers, I hadn’t always planned to follow this career path. I fell into it after I deferred the 2nd year of my first Bachelor degree – journalism just wasn’t my thing.
After a nervous, sweaty interview and months of anxious waiting, I received my acceptance letter in the mail. I cried, again. Although I’d heard from a lot of people that a Masters is hard- big workload and a massive commitment – nothing really prepared me for what it actually has been. ‘Hard’ is definitely an understatement, and it sure is a massive workload, but as mum always tells me, “if it were easy then everyone would do it!”
I’m a stress-head by nature, so I initially had a bit of trouble adjusting to the pressure and expectation that came with studying a postgraduate degree. Even now, I still struggle sometimes. But despite all the tears and dramatic proclamations of dropping out, this Master of Physiotherapy degree is one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done – and I haven’t even finished it yet!
This Master of Physiotherapy degree is one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done – and I haven’t even finished it yet!
I studied my undergraduate degree at UTS, so I already loved the uni, but postgrad is really an entirely different atmosphere. I never have those “when are we ever going to need this in real life?!” moments anymore. Everything is hands-on, practical stuff from the get-go, and our tutors treat us like real-life adults (although I honestly don’t feel like one yet).
Some weeks are definitely harder than others, and I’m not a model student who keeps up-to-date with all the work all the time. Sometimes I’m good with time management, and everything makes sense in class, and I go to sleep at a reasonable hour, homework completed in advance. Sometimes I eat chocolate and cheese for dinner while stressfully watching Netflix, then get all the answers wrong in class the next day.
Regardless of which Lindsey I am, I always feel supported at all points in time. The tutors expect that some days we’ll be better than others, and acknowledge that we have lives outside of uni. They’ve found a good balance between that tough-love thing and being diplomatic – I guess that’s why they were chosen to teach us. As for the friends I’ve made this year? I know I’ll likely be in contact with them for the rest of my life. We see each other more than we see anyone else in our lives; we laugh, cry, stress, celebrate together. I know it all sounds a bit cliché, but clichés come from somewhere, right?
We’re coming to the end of our 2nd semester now, and about to go on our first block of placements. After that, we’ll be 50% physios. And to be honest, I’m absolutely terrified but, I’m also really excited! This year has been a series of soaring highs and crushing lows, but it’s taught me so much – not only about my future career, but also character development, the importance of passion, and the value of mistakes. So, if next year is anything like this one has been, then bring it on!