Ithaca College Will Make You Ready
With a vibrant community, professors who inspire, and the hands-on experience you need to dive into your field with confidence.
Jill Cadby loves to help people. So when this graduate of Ithaca College’s doctoral program in physical therapy was offered the opportunity to work at the Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, she jumped at the chance. The institute is world-renowned for its work, which made it a perfect fit for Jill coming out of Ithaca’s highly rated program.
“Kessler is a really great learning environment because it has three floors and you get to rotate every year. Right now I head the program on our floor for those who have had strokes. I get to take them on the treadmill and assist them in walking. I really like it because I get to see the gains the patients make daily.”
At Ithaca College, Jill focused on the neurological aspects of the practice. She spent time doing fieldwork in Rochester and Buffalo, New York, and in Florida. But her most moving experience was in Malawi, Africa, where a group from Ithaca College set up medical clinics, assisted with disease testing, and provided $50,000 worth of medical supplies. Jill also trained local nurses in physical therapy, making sure her work with the people of Malawi would continue to have an impact long after she returned to the states.
“At each fieldwork location I gained a tremendous amount of experience, but Malawi was a true life-changing opportunity,” Jill says. “It made me appreciate my profession and how I can really help change the lives of others for the better.”
Jill credits Ithaca College with making everything possible. “This is right where I want to be right now. My professors made me feel as if I could be a good therapist, and they respected me not only as a student but also as a future colleague. I feel ready to continue my personal and professional growth on a daily basis.”
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Jeff Ball decided he wanted to be a band director while in high school. That made Ithaca College’s renowned music education program the easy choice.
“School districts know that Ithaca College is the best music education coming out of the Northeast,” he says. “A degree from IC puts you at the top of every pile of interviews.” After graduation, Jeff had his pick of jobs in multiple school districts but was dedicated to working in an urban setting. After starting as a general music teacher in the Bronx, he transferred to Grand Street Campus High School in Brooklyn to take over the band director position. The out-going director was an IC music grad who brought Jeff in because of their shared background.
“She told me, ‘I saw Ithaca on the diploma and I wanted to interview you,’” Jeff says. He landed the job and has been building the program ever since—from 45 kids to 180 currently. This growth is all the more significant considering the vast majority of students in the school are below the poverty line.
“These are kids who really can’t afford their own instruments and can’t afford private lessons. But the quality of performance is extremely high, even though the kids have only been playing for three years,” Jeff says.
This year, Jeff is coordinating the entire performing arts department at the school. As if all that wasn’t enough to fill his calendar, he also conducts the Brooklyn Wind Symphony, a premier wind ensemble composed of 75 semiprofessional adult musicians—many of them IC grads.
“Other people go to their jobs and in their spare time do the things that make them happy,” he says. “Conducting and teaching are the things that make me happy. I’m very fortunate that I get to do what I do.”
>> More on this story: Music Education Teaching Programs
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