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My Plate Is Full …

Wainwright, Susan Flannery PT, PhD

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Journal of Physical Therapy Education: September 2020 - Volume 34 - Issue 3 - p 179
doi: 10.1097/JTE.0000000000000155
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This idiom is used to describe a schedule or workload that is filled to capacity. On the flip side, the importance of achieving work–life balance is discussed in contemporary society. Tips to achieve this balance are often in conflict with the message to “get a bigger plate”. To be truthful, in response to the work that must be done in these unprecedented times, we have been challenged to pile more onto our plates. Rather than adding more to our plates, the constantly shifting environment requires skillful evaluation to prioritize what should be on our plate. This editorial is a reflection on what is shaping my schedule and workload to fill my plate.

The publication of issue 2 of JoPTE in May coincided with the realities of education and practice in a corona virus disease, 2019 (COVID-19) world. Since publication of the last issue, our country is now challenged to ameliorate the long-standing systemic racism that has been brought to the fore as awareness of ongoing racial injustices has increased. I am hopeful that that groundswell of peaceful activism persists to effect meaningful and sustainable change.

At the Convention of the Medical Committee for Human Rights in 1966, Martin Luther King Jr declared, “Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health care is the most shocking and inhumane”. I am grateful to be a member of this profession that espouses core values that frame a call to action to address the health disparities and discrimination faced by many of our citizens. As leaders in education, we are challenged to be thoughtful in engaging our colleagues and students in impactful learning that results in purposeful care delivery to achieve successful patient-centered outcomes.

The crises we are facing provide the opportunity to challenge our status quo. Through my participation in listserves, listening sessions, formal and informal peer networks, and so on, I am struck by the resilience of our profession in responding to these challenges. We will continue to be resourceful as we find the way forward with our students through online education and social distancing within our communities of practice.

The last issue of the Journal also marked the end of the 3-year tenure of Dr. Kevin Brueilly and I as coeditors of the Journal. The whirlwind of the COVID-19 crisis focused attention in the issue 2 editorial on the challenge and potential opportunities resulting from the disruption of our traditional models of physical therapy education. I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge Dr. Brueilly's contributions to the achievements of the Journal over the past 3 years. Through these contributions, we continue to elevate the Journal with the goal of securing indexing in Medline.

As we look forward, the Journal continues to evolve. We are thankful for the continued support of the Academy of Physical Therapy Education. Kaufamn Wills Fusting and Company LLC. has been contracted to provide editorial office management services. Please join me in welcoming Ms. Connie Connolly, who assumed role of Managing Editor for the Journal this past June. In her role, she has responsibility for many administrative activities, including manuscript management to maximize efficiency and timeliness of the submission and peer review process, oversight of the EditorialManager submission platform, and frontline communication with authors. We anticipate that this level of administrative support will improve the peer review process for reviewers and the submission process for authors.

Fortunately, Dr. Joyce Maring will continue her commitment to the Journal in the role of Associate Editor effective July 2020. Dr. Maring brings extensive experience in physical therapy education and research to this new position. Her current research activity includes the Health Care Opportunity Program at the George Washington University. This program is funded through Health Resources and Services Administration to create pipeline programs to increase diversity by encouraging to disadvantaged and underrepresented students into health careers. Additional research interests include interprofessional education. Dr. Maring also serves as the Chair of Physical Therapy Panel for Commission for the Accreditation of Physical Therapist Education.

On a lighter note our “In Box” at the Journal has been very full. We are seeing an unprecedented number of submissions this calendar year. What a wonderful problem to have. One unanticipated consequence of this COVID-19 world to the education community seems to be time to write? The editorial team remains committed to timely peer review and electronic publication of all accepted manuscripts.

Like you, managing that full plate is a work in progress as I plan with the information that I have and react to what occurs around me. I am grateful to be part of the community of physical therapy educators that I collaborate with to inform my decisions about what fills my plate. I am hopeful that in our roles as physical therapy educators, we maintain focus to individually and collectively effect purposeful, meaningful, and impactful change in education and practice through thoughtful and resourceful action.

© 2020 Academy of Physical Therapy Education, APTA