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Careers at UW Health

Frequently asked questions

Frequently asked questions

Q: Will the resident rotate through all the areas of practice?

A: Yes. The resident will rotate through all major practice settings with a focus on inpatient, inpatient rehabilitation, outpatient care and Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (LEND).

Q: What will a typical week look like?

A: Each week includes clinical hours, designated mentoring, and didactic educational hours.

Q: How will mentoring be addressed?

A: Mentors will be assigned for each of the topics based on the current Description of Residency Practice

Q: How will didactic coursework be covered?

A: Didactic course work will be covered through independent readings, clinical education content, and lectures. Residents will be expected to complete some of the didactic course work outside of their work hours.

Q: Will the resident be required to work on weekends?

A: Yes, there will be a weekend component as part of your clinical hours (to be further clarified)

Q: Are there research opportunities?

A: The resident will be given an opportunity to complete quality improvement projects, based on the interest of the resident.

Q: Is there is a preference for in-state students and/or applicants?

A: UW Health provides an equal opportunity to all pediatric physical therapy resident applicants regardless of their place of residence at the time of application.

Q: What are you looking for in a resident?

A candidate should demonstrate the desire to deepen their knowledge and experience in Pediatric Physical Therapy. They should have a strong academic background, some experience demonstrating an interest in Pediatric Physical Therapy

Q: Is there tuition for the residency?

A: No.  There are no fees or tuition.

Program outcomes

The UW Health physical therapy clinics have a long-standing tradition of mentoring students from local, state and national programs.

Program success is based on:

  • 100% graduation rate
  • 100% employment rate within 3 months graduation
  • Completion of Pediatric Specialty Certification Exam
  • 100% of our residents recommend our pediatric physical therapy residency to colleagues, peers, and fellow physical therapy students following graduation.
  • 100% of our residents indicate they are prepared to practice as a physical therapist in any pediatric setting in the United States following graduation.

Stipends and benefits

The Pediatric Physical Therapist resident will receive:

  • An annual stipend, paid on a bi-weekly basis.
  • Comprehensive health insurance coverage including basic dental and vision.
  • Employee Reimbursement Account: Pre-tax deductions made for reimbursement of approved medical and dependent care expenses.
  • Additional benefits include life insurance, tax-sheltered annuity, and deferred compensation.
  • Paid leave time to include 11.5 personal days (which includes vacation, continuing education, and sick time) as well as eight holidays.
  • Access to UW Health learning and development opportunities and employee well-being.

Eligibility requirements

The Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency at UW Health and American Family Children’s Hospital is a new full-time, 13-month program.


To be eligible for the Pediatric Physical Therapist Residency Program you must:

  • Be a graduate of a CAPTE accredited physical therapy program.
  • Be eligible for licensure as a physical therapist in the state of Wisconsin.
  • Obtain NPI number prior to starting the residency program.
  • New graduates should take the NBPT Exam no later than April in order to be eligible to start the program in July.

New graduates with a significant interest in pediatric physical therapy are eligible to apply.


To obtain information on licensing, contact the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services

Application process

  • Current resume/CV
  • Cover letter that addresses the following questions:
    • Why are you interested in completing a Pediatric Residency Program?
    • What are your specific areas of interest?
    • What makes you the right candidate for this program?
    • Why are you interested in applying to the residency program at UW Health?
    • How would participation in the Wisconsin Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (WI LEND) training advance your professional goals?
    • What are your future career goals?
  • Three letters of recommendation (at least two professional references)
  • Submit all required material to spatankar@uwhealth.org

Application dates

  • The application period will open Jan. 15, 2024
  • The application deadline is March 15, 2024
  • Interviews will occur in March 2024
  • The expected offering date is Apr. 1, 2024

Program mission

Our mission

The UW Health Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency Program is dedicated to providing excellence in pediatric patient care through teaching, research, and community partnerships. In accordance with this mission, the physical therapy departments have collaborated to create a post-professional clinical residency program in pediatric physical therapy.

The program provides an advanced evidence-based curriculum that is patient centered to develop pediatric physical therapists as specialists. The program ensures continuous improvement and strategic initiatives. Through mentoring, education, and clinical practice, the program will also enhance patient care to the community we serve.


The curriculum is based on the Physical Therapy Description of Residency Practice- Pediatrics. Residents have the opportunity to benefit from a wealth of available clinical resources and will work closely with an excellent staff of medical practitioners, participate in teaching opportunities within the clinical setting and with the University of Wisconsin-Madison Physical Therapy program.

Outstanding library facilities in-house and on the University of Wisconsin campus allow for independent study. 


The UW Health Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency is seeking to obtain accreditation by the American Board of Physical Therapy Residency and Fellowship Education (ABPTRFE). The program hopes to successfully receive accreditation prior to the first resident graduating from the program.

Contact information

Mary Erdman, MS, CCC/SLP
Program Coordinator
(608) 263-8060

Sangeeta Patankar, DPT
Program Coordinator

Recruitment Center
(608) 263-6500

Clinic rotations

American Family Children’s Hospital, Madison, WI

University Avenue Rehabilitation Clinic, Middleton, WI

  • Outpatient physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy
  • Clinic provides support to clinics at American Family Children’s Hospital and Waisman Center including:
    • Cerebral Palsy Clinic
    • Neuromotor Clinic
    • Spina Bifida Clinic
    • Chest Wall Deformity Clinic

This clinical site will incorporate clinical and didactic training in their outpatient clinics as well as some of the multi-disciplinary clinics.

Waisman Center, Madison, WI

The resident will participate as a Fellow in the Wisconsin Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (WI LEND) Program. WI LEND is an interdisciplinary leadership training program funded by the federal Maternal & Child Health Bureau of the Department of Health & Human Services (MCHB/DHHS) to prepare professionals, graduate students, and individuals with lived experience with developmental disability for leadership and advanced professional practice in order to improve the lives of children with neurodevelopmental and related disabilities and their families. WI LEND participation includes didactic, community-based, clinical, and leadership training. 

UW Health is a designated “LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality Leader” in the 2022 Healthcare Equality Index and both University Hospital and East Madison Hospital have earned the coveted “Leader” designation.  In addition, UW Health has a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.

Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency

The Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency at UW Health is a full-time, 13-month program that begins at the end of June and concludes in July of the following year. The program accepts one applicant per year.

About our program

Residents will have the opportunity to work through the continuum of pediatric physical therapy including acute care, inpatient rehabilitation, neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), outpatient physical therapy services, birth to 3, pediatric specialty clinics, school system and Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (LEND). The resident will receive one-on-one mentoring in all the major practice settings. Mentors will be assigned by the program.

Residents are compensated as part of a stipend package. This is approximately 70 percent of a full FTE salary. In addition, residents receive a benefit package that includes health insurance.