Nicholas Redden: From SFU to The Cleveland Clinic


Nicholas Redden is a 2018 SFU graduate and a physical therapist with the Cleveland Clinic in outpatient sports rehabilitation. Here, the Clearfield County native recounts the path that lead him to Saint Francis and what he’s been up to since graduation.

It’s been over a year since you graduated from SFU, what are you doing now? 
After graduating from the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program, I passed my boards in July of 2018. Following my successful completion of the National Physical Therapy Exam (NPTE), I accepted a position as an inpatient/outpatient physical therapist, through Marymount Hospital, with the Cleveland Clinic. I have had the opportunity to work with a variety of patient populations and settings, from stroke in the acute care setting to ACL reconstruction rehabilitation in the outpatient setting.

When did you realize that pursuing a career in physical therapy was the path for you? 
When I was 10, I fell off a bike and underwent reconstruction surgery for my left elbow. My elbow was immobilized for several weeks in a hard cast and I was never sent to physical therapy for recovery. After it was removed, I worked hard on my own to regain my range of motion. When I went back to the surgeon several weeks later for a follow-up, he was impressed by the recovery of my elbow. He said, "I should send you down to the physical therapy department so you can teach them a thing or two about helping people get their range of motion back.” That is what sparked my interest in the profession, helping people.

Why did you decide to enroll at Saint Francis?
Saint Francis felt like home. Coming from a small town in central Pennsylvania, the small-town feel really drew me in. My brother received a bachelor's and master's degree from SFU, so I already had a pretty good idea as to what the environment was like. During my visit, it was evident that SFU has a reputation for having professors that really care about their students.

How did your major prepare you for what you do now and where you hope to be in the future?
Because of SFU I have had a great opportunity to work in a wide variety of settings early in my career with my current job. I have yet to find myself in a situation where I felt in over my head. The education that SFU provided me has allowed me to have in depth discussions with a variety of other healthcare professionals and, most importantly, to provide excellent care to my patients, while gaining their confidence and trust along the way.

What advice would you give to a new student considering a career in your field?
Take advantage of every resource you have available to you; ask questions, be proactive and look for a professional mentor.