Growing up, Ben Larson ‘14 aspired to be a physical therapist for a professional sports team because he was a multi-sport athlete and had his share of visits to the physical therapist and athletic trainer. “I remember thinking to myself, ‘wow, this could be something I would have fun doing as a career.’” Larson can now check that off his bucket list because he has been accepted as a student physical therapist for the San Francisco Giants training camp this summer starting on July 14.
During his internship, Larson will be providing rehabilitation therapy to elite athletes in the major and minor leagues who suffer from physical injuries. “I am excited to have the opportunity to work with a patient base that will be highly functioning and I look forward to learning new strategies, techniques, and interventions to treat and get them back to what they love doing as quickly as possible,” said Larson who learned about the training camp by doing some research and speaking with a peer and Dr. Casey Nesbit, Assistant Professor and Director of Clinical Education.
By the end of the internship Larson hopes that he will gain a better understanding of sports therapy and determine if he would like to pursue his career in the industry. He’s also interested in outpatient therapy and traveling overseas on medical missions. In addition to his professional goals, he would also like to get married and start a family soon.
While at Pacific, he has conducted undergraduate research and worked on independent study courses with Dr. Todd Davenport, Associate Professor of Physical Therapy. He has presented posters at three different conferences and is an author on two research papers that are in the works to be published in a research journal. “Dr. Davenport serves as a role model on how to invest in others and to encourage them to bring out their best,” said Larson.
Larson also loves baseball but admits that he didn’t grow up watching the Giants. He has been an Atlanta Braves fan since he was six years old and remembers watching them lose to the Yankees in the 1996 World Series. When he turned 10 and moved to California he has been cheering on the Giants “as long as they weren’t playing the Braves.”
Three unique facts about Larson are that he enjoys board games that involve strategic and logical thinking, playing football and basketball, and has acrophohia, fear of heights.
Larson is a member of the doctor of physical therapy class of 2014 and also earned his bachelor’s at Pacific in 2012. He chose Pacific for its competitive academic scholarship package on “a faith-based decision.” “It was between Pacific and another university, but the big issue was cost. So I prayerfully considered both colleges, and when I received multiple academic scholarships for Pacific I knew which direction I was being led.”
By Dua Her '09