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Exercise Science Grad Earning Master of Prosthetics-Orthotics

Davionne Laney, a recent graduate from Seton Hill’s Exercise Science Program, is earning his Master of Prosthetics-Orthotics at UT Southwestern in Dallas, Tx. He recently took some time out of his busy schedule to answer some questions about his experience.

How did you choose prosthetics/orthotics as a career path?

I always had the intention of getting into the medical field while using my exercise science degree as the pedestal to get me there. I explored several career options (athletic training, physical therapy, chiropractic, and medical school with the hopes of working as an orthopedist). After a lot of self-reflection, I came across the field of orthotics and prosthetics. This offers the perfect opportunity to intertwine all of the characteristics of a career that I desired. 

Why did you choose Seton Hill for your undergraduate degree?

I chose Seton Hill because of the Exercise Science program and the chance to continue playing the sport I love. The department really gave me something that I valued in my educational experience in being able to work with actual clients toward the end of the curriculum. There was an emphasis on being exposed to the many different avenues of healthcare that can be followed with an Exercise Science Degree. The football program also taught me about accountability for myself and responsibility for others that proved to be invaluable as I have left campus. This, along with the friendly and positive atmosphere of the Seton Hill campus really made the decision easy. 

"O&P allows me to be a difference-maker in the world, one person at a time."

Why did you choose to major in exercise science at Seton Hill?

It was the perfect opportunity to pursue a career in medicine without having a definitive goal in mind. I had the chance to change my mind several times while staying with the same major. This allowed me to thankfully find the field of Orthotics and Prosthetics. 

The courses within the program apply both to personal and professional interests. It did not feel like an obligation to study what I did because I genuinely enjoyed all of my courses. The professors within the program really made the experience worth it, they advocated for me to explore as many options as I needed to, and presented information in our classes that was applicable and relevant to so many aspects of education. 

Aside from football and earning a degree, what else were you involved in at Seton Hill?

I was also involved in the Multicultural and International Student Organization (MISO), the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), Griffin Guides, Black Student Union and Exercise Science Club during my time at Seton Hill.

What are you learning in your master’s program?

The field comprises different clinical settings, but they include performing clinical evaluations of patients, casting patients for a negative model, creating a positive model from the cast, correcting the positive model, and fabricating whatever device needs to be made for the individual patient’s needs. No two people are the same, and the practice really takes this into account while serving each person. 

How did the Exercise Science Program (and other elements of the Seton Hill experience) prepare you for grad school and, ultimately, your career with prosthetics?

The program’s ability to offer a clinical track was a perfect fit for dealing with patients or clients that we would see in the real world. This set me up well for my internship experience through the school, and gave me an advantage while progressing through graduate school. My experience at Seton Hill definitely played a factor in my decision to pursue orthotics and prosthetics. Seton Hill really emphasized building relationships and showcasing what it meant to have a good character while moving about in the world. Treating everyone with respect and digitiny were at the forefront of what being a student’s time on and off-campus should look like.  

What are you looking forward to in your career?

O&P allows me to be a difference-maker in the world, one person at a time. It is also a really unique career field. I have always wanted to do something for work that would warrant follow-up questions because it really helps to understand how large the world truly is. There are things out there that a lot of people don’t consider because it is not at the forefront of their worlds.