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2020 Clinical Partner Award

BenchMark Physical Therapy Provides Training for Up to 40 Emory DPT Students Annually
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As a 1995 Emory Master of Physical Therapy graduate, BenchMark Physical Therapy Executive Vice President, Operations Walt Porter knows the quality of the Emory Division of Physical Therapy. Since starting with BenchMark in 2002, Porter has led the growth of the company’s locations in the Metro Atlanta area from one to more than 100. He cites his partnership with Emory as a big reason for Benchmark’s impressive success.

“We have an amazing team, including many people who came from Emory,” says Porter, who has hired several Emory grads both in the clinics and executive ranks.“If you surround yourself with good people, good things happen.”

Because of its successful partnership with the Emory DPT program, BenchMark, part of Upstream Rehabilitation with 750 locations nationwide, has been named the DPT program’s 2020 Outstanding Clinical Partner. The company provides clinical training to 30 to 40 Emory DPT students each year throughout the country.

Calling Emory DPT students “incredibly well prepared,” Porter says that BenchMark aims to provide more than just a clinical experience, but opportunities for students “to shadow the therapists with specialty certifications that they may be interested in.”

Ashlee Jones, Upstream’s manager of clinical placement and academic relations who is in charge of student placement, says that many of Benchmark’s clinical instructors specifically request Emory DPT students.

“Emory DPT students demonstrate a true passion for rehabilitation,” says Jones.“They are there to be successful during their time in our clinics, but most of them already have an ambition for what they will do after graduation.”

Last year, Jones helped place Emory DPT students in Upstream facilities in the Atlanta area as well as Alabama, South Carolina, Oregon and Washington.

“BenchMark clinicians have all sorts of specialties,” says one Emory DPT student who completed clinicals at BenchMark.“It was awesome because I got exposure to pelvic floor physical therapy, dry needling, cupping, neuro, hand therapy and all sorts of ortho diagnoses. The atmosphere of the clinic was wonderful. The clinical instructors are extremely supportive of the students and always willing to take time to talk or to teach.”

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