IPTF Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Scholarship

The IPTA and IPTF recognize the importance of promoting greater diversity within the physical therapy profession in order to better serve the residents of Illinois and its members.

The IPTA defines underrepresented minorities and underserved communities as individuals and groups who belong to racial, ethnic, and cultural minorities; sexual orientation and gender identity minorities; nationality and immigrant status minorities; and individuals living with disabilities.

This scholarship is offered to physical therapy and physical therapist assistant students who are in the last year of their program and are current members of the Illinois Physical Therapy Association (IPTA).

Applicants for this scholarship should demonstrate their commitment to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion within the physical therapy profession through their personal life experiences, activities/contributions in underserved communities, and future professional goals.  Applicants may or may not identify an an underrepresented minority.

PT students selected to receive scholarships will receive a one-time stipend of $2,500.  PTA students selected to receive scholarships will receive a one-time stipend of $1,500. All recipients will also receive one-time funding for APTA/IPTA membership renewal at their next renewal date.

Scholarship recipients will be recognized during IPTA's 2024 virtual Assembly of Representatives and in IPTA publications.

  • 2024 applications will be accepted beginning November 15, 2023.
  • Applicants must submit the following in a single PDF document to [email protected] by the application deadline:
  • Complete this cover sheet that includes
    • Contact information
    • Demographic data (to be compiled in aggregate, not as a basis for selection but to help us ensure we are making this scholarship accessible to everyone)
    • List of activities should include diversity/equity/inclusion community activities/services; volunteer experiences; and other pertinent information 
  • A personal essay (no longer than 600 words) outlining your professional goals and contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives in physical therapy (beyond what is required by their academic program).  
  • The essay must include a response to the following three questions:
    • Why are your contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion significant? 
    • How have your activities and contributions impacted the communities you serve? (i.e., at the Association, school, pro bono clinic, community outreach, screening, advocacy, food banks, etc.) 
    • How have your experiences and contributions impacted you personally?
  • Three letters of recommendation
    • One from a faculty member verifying you are a student in good standing
    • One from a clinical instructor attesting to your work ethic and professionalism in terms of promoting DEI
    • One from an individual confirming your contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Unofficial transcript from your PT/PTA program only (showing your GPA)
  • Questions?  Contact Linda Griffith at [email protected]

All applications must be submitted by January 31, 2024.


  • Applicant must be current Illinois student PT or student PTA member, in good standing with the APTA/IPTA.
  • Applicant must be in good academic standing and currently enrolled in a PT/PTA program (not limited to Illinois schools).
  • Applicant must be in the last year of their program.
  • Applicant must submit their applications, in its entirety, before the established deadline (January 31, 2024).

Selection and Award Process

  • All completed applications received by the deadline will be independently scored by a selection panel of reviewers. Reviewers will not be affiliated/employed with any PT or PTA program at which the student currently attends
  • Applications will be scored on a competitive basis with an emphasis on the applicant's:
    • Contributions to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in their communities and/or the physical therapy profession
    • Academic accomplishments
  • Students selected to receive scholarships will be notified by March 1, 2024. Those applicants who were not selected will be notified by March 1, 2024.
  • Scholarship recipients will be recognized during the 2024 IPTA Virtual Assembly of Representatives on April 27, 2024 and in IPTA publications.
  • Checks will be mailed to recipients upon their acceptance of the award.
  • The 2024 scholarship recipients will serve on the selection panel for the 2025 DEI Scholarship.

Help Fund this Scholarship

While the IPTA Board approved donating excess student support to begin the funding process for this scholarship, you can donate to this scholarship as well.  If you wish to contribute, please click the button below.



QUINTIN WYNNE, SPT, Northern Illinois University
NATALIA MARTINEZ, SPTA, Elgin Community College
Download application cover sheet