BHSU Yellow Jacket Softball player's future career influenced by sport, family

Author: BHSU Communications/Wednesday, May 6, 2015/Categories: 2015








           BHSU exercise science major from Colorado Springs, Colo., Cassie Smith, will graduate from BHSU and attend the University of Puget Sound School of Physical Therapy, a career inspired by her parents&rsquo example of caring and overcoming.   






           Cassie Smith&rsquos family gathers to congratulate her during a Yellow Jacket softball game on Senior Day. Cassie graduates from BHSU this weekend before pursing her doctorate in physical therapy. L to R: Phil Repasky, Cassie&rsquos fianc&eacute Carmen Smith, Cassie&rsquos mother Cassie Charles Smith, Cassie&rsquos father.



Cassie Smith&rsquos parents are all the motivation she needs to pursue her future career.

Cassie, an exercise science major from Colorado Springs, Colo., will attend the University of Puget Sound&rsquos School of Physical Therapy in Tacoma, Wash., after graduating from Black Hills State University.

As a physical therapist, Cassie will follow in her mother&rsquos footsteps into a profession that promotes mobility and quality of life. Her father also had a significant impact on her career direction.

"My dad is a paraplegic from the waist down. That&rsquos how they met &ndash my mom was his physical therapist. I helped take care of my dad while growing up and that prompted me to pursue a career in healthcare," said Cassie.

Cassie played softball for the BHSU Yellow Jackets throughout college and found several connections between her sport on the field and her science in the classroom.

"Many students have graduated from BHSU and went on to graduate school in physical therapy," said Cassie. "When I visited campus and talked with the faculty, I knew it would be a good fit."

Dr. Charles Lamb and Dr. James Hesson are two of the BHSU professors Cassie says especially prepared her for graduate school. From dissection lab experiences to time management skills, Cassie says her experiences inside the classroom complimented the skills she built outside.

In preparing her graduate school applications, Cassie completed 400 hours of physical therapy observation in outpatient and inpatient facilities along with nursing homes in Spearfish and Colorado Springs.

"Right now I enjoy working in the outpatient specialty because it&rsquos more hands-on. The rehab clinic I observed at in Spearfish was outstanding and the environment they provided ensured patient success," said Cassie.

Cassie&rsquos family experiences with physical therapy, her own sports injuries and her education at BHSU have guided and prepared her for her future career in healthcare.

"I&rsquove always been involved in physical therapy. I&rsquove seen it&rsquos a way that I can help others overcome obstacles," said Cassie. "As a physical therapist I&rsquoll be able to help my patients achieve their goals. Helping them is mine."


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