Title

Efosa M. Erhunmwunse

The Michael A. Pagliarulo Service Award

The Michael A. Pagliarulo Service Award is awarded to the physical therapy student who demonstrates outstanding service to the program and the profession of physical therapy.

This is a photo of Efosa Erhunmwunse. Efos is wearing a white striped shirt and is smiling at the camera.

As a Nigerian American who hails from the Bronx, I enjoy helping people who are often underrepresented. I knew at a young age I’d work in the healthcare system because it allowed me to make a positive difference in people’s lives and gave me the autonomy to design my career. I chose Ithaca College because of the accelerated doctoral program and the opportunities to study abroad. After graduation, I plan to work in a hospital system with acute care or inpatient rehabilitation for individuals from various ethnic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgrounds with the goal of applying to an acute care residency program.

I established a student organization called Ithaca College Physical Therapy Students of Color with the vision to create a support system that enables physical therapy students of color to flourish in the program. That step led to the opportunity to attend the American Academy of Physical Therapy’s 30th Anniversary Conference, where I met the executive board and student physical therapists of color from other institutions. I saw my future self in these clinicians who are change agents in their communities and the profession. I gained a second family and newfound perspective for my career.

Academic Achievements and Personal Highlights

  • Cum Laude
  • Dean's List
  • Chavez/Lorde Social Justice Award
  • Peggy R. Williams Award for Academic and Community Leadership
  • Laurence S. Hill and Adrian M. Newens Scholarship
  • Study Abroad, Spanish Studies (Alicante, Spain); Health Care and Culture (Morocco)
  • Teaching Assistant, Peripheral Joint Mobilization
  • James J. Whalen Academic Symposium presentation, “Redesigning the Freshman Experience at Ithaca” (2015)
  • American Physical Therapy Association, New York Chapter
  • Ithaca College Physical Therapy Students of Color, Founder and President