Cynthia Lau, BKin, MPT, MRSc 2023

A Personal and Professional Investment

Integrating Graduate Studies and the Pursuit of an Advance Manual Therapy Designation

Upon her 2015 graduation from the UBC Master of Physical Therapy program, Cynthia Lau set a goal of obtaining a ‘Fellow of Canadian Academy of Manipulative Physiotherapy (FCAMPT)’ designation. To do this, Cynthia decided upon the UBC ‘Graduate Certificate in Orthopaedic Musculoskeletal Physical Therapy’ (GCOMPT) program, with the option of combining post-graduate training in manual therapy with an online MRSc degree.

This program combination, unique to UBC, allowed Cynthia to explore different options in rehabilitation teaching and research, in addition to advancing her manual therapy clinical skills. The coursework includes a blend of online work, hands-on clinical blocks, and clinical mentorship. “There were many opportunities to learn from knowledgeable clinicians who provided me with valuable tools to help facilitate my clients’ recoveries. I’ve applied all the things I’ve learned into my practice, including mentoring new graduates and students, developing and enhancing rehabilitation programs offered at the clinic, and critically reasoning through challenging cases.” says Cynthia.

Throughout her studies, Cynthia maintained her clinical work in two different private practice clinics in Okanagan. For those considering the combined program, Cynthia suggests: organizing a calendar of all due dates and setting clear deadlines for oneself, finding creative ways to integrate clinical interests into the course and project work, developing a support system of family, friends, colleagues, and other GCOMPT/MRSc learners, and carving out time for self-care!

Cynthia reports other benefits of the combined program, “the elective courses will challenge and expand your thinking in different aspects of rehabilitation practice. Embrace the opportunity to learn amongst other learners from different healthcare disciplines. For me, this was something new and enlightening.”

During her studies, Cynthia completed a small-scale research project, “A Pilates-Based Prehabilitation Program for Patients Undergoing Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction”. This project not only evidenced the approach she uses in her clinical practice but also exposed Cynthia to the importance and potential of using patient-reported outcome measures and functional impairment tests in clinical practice. She plans to integrate these types of measures into her future practice for meaningful clinical information.  

Congratulations on meeting your goal, Cynthia!