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Physical Therapy Assistant students post perfect certification pass rate

July 18, 2018

The Physical Therapy Assistant program at Heartland Community College is celebrating a perfect success rate of students passing the national certification exam.

For the second year in a row the Physical Therapy Assistant (PTA) program has posted an impressive 100 percent first time national exam pass rate.

“We continue to see tremendous success for this young program,” said Daryl Menke, Physical Therapy Assistant program coordinator and instructor. “Taking the national examination is a requirement to becoming licensed, and all of our students passed on the first attempt. This exceeded the national rate of around 87 percent of students who pass the national examination on the first attempt.”

The certification test was administered to spring graduates on July 10. The results of the test were released this week.

As the second cohort of students to graduate from the PTA program and head to the workforce, they can look to the impressive placement rate of last year’s graduates.  All of the Spring 2017 graduating class of PTA students seeking a job in the field found employment.

Menke said that the job picture for this year’s cohort is also bright.

“Four of our students have already accepted positions before the exam results were announced,” Menke said. “Now that the cohort has passed the national examination the students will turn their energies toward employment. The prospects are great for this group and the jobs are out there.”

Heartland’s Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA) program became fully accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) on April 26, 2017.

In order to become a licensed PTA, students must graduate from an accredited program to become eligible to sit for the national licensure exam. Both the 2017 and 2018 cohorts posted a 100 graduation rate as well as passing the certification exam.

About the PTA program

A PTA provides physical therapy treatments under the direction and supervision of a licensed physical therapist to help people recover from injuries, illnesses and surgeries.

The program is now accepting students into its next cohort. The application process closes on August 1 of each year. More information can be found at

Written by: Steve Fast