Kristine Valerio

I live in Westchester County, 20 minutes away from New York City via train. I’m a registered related services provider for the New York City Board of Education, a registered Medicaid provider and a registered early intervention evaluator and therapist for the New York State Early Intervention Program. I current work full-time for a special school in Riverdale, Bronx, and per diem work for an early intervention sensory gym in New Rochelle. I’m a per diem EI and CPSE evaluator for Theracare of New York, and I also rent a sensory gym in Midtown Manhattan servicing older children.

Why the PPDPT program

With the current changes in health care as well as the American Physical Therapy Association’s Vision 2020, I have decided that I need to have the tools to move forward with my practice and be consistent with the vision of the association for patients to have direct access to providers. I believe that a PPDPT will prepare me for the challenges that profession will face in the future.


I wanted to enroll in a program where I can effectively manage my time, manage my finances and learn specific areas of physical therapy that I can use immediately in my current practice. I found that DMU provides modules on specific areas such as manual therapy, clinical decision-making and business management, which are essential in starting my own clinical practice. Moreover, the cost of the program was within my budget, and I know I will not risk stopping in the middle of the course because of financial difficulties.

Career objectives

I plan to expand my pediatric practice in New York and to teach what I have learned to students and colleagues back home in the Philippines.

Experiences in the program so far

It has been tough at times, but at the end of the day, it gives me the satisfaction of knowing I can confidently face my patients and provide the best care possible because of evidence-based practice. Now, I always explore the body of evidence for every intervention that I think would help my clients.

Advice for prospective students

I always imagine myself with my PPDPT diploma, and it has been a real positive reinforcement for me to go on and read, study, post and study some more despite losing sleep and occasional weekends. I know the rewards will be unlimited.

Favorite extracurricular activities

Sleep, go out with my friends – after all, I live in New York. I enjoy yoga and watching old Turner Classic movies. It’s really nice to see the old New York from the 1930s and ’40s. I read books, explore New York City and, with some spare money, shop till I drop.