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In accordance with OrthoCarolina’s Corporate Mission Statement, the OrthoCarolina Residency in Orthopedic Physical Therapy mission statement is:

“The mission of the OrthoCarolina Residency in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy is to provide excellence in education one clinician at a time. Through both experiential and didactic learning this program will develop master clinicians who possess self-reflective, innovative clinical reasoning skills.”


The OrthoCarolina Residency Programs in Orthopedic Physical Therapy is an 18-month long, post-professional clinical and didactic education experience designed for physical therapists who wish to significantly advance their preparation as a specialty provider of orthopedic patient care services. This residency combines ongoing clinical mentoring with a theoretical didactic and laboratory basis for advanced practice and scientific inquiry. The residency program also includes surgical observation, attendance at physician conferences and completion of a capstone research project. Residents accepted into the program are full-time employees of OrthoCarolina salaried with benefits.


The Orthopedic Physical Therapy residency program provides supervised clinical and didactic education experiences. Residents complete more than 3000 hours of supervised clinical practice including laboratory and lecture study. One hundred and fifty hours of clinical practice are one-on-one patient care sessions where the resident and clinical instructors see patients together. These courses of study culminate with the completion of staged oral, written and practical examinations in an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) format administered by a board of faculty examiners. These programs provide the equivalent of 18 semester credit hours of instruction. The physical therapy residency prepares the resident to take the Orthopedic Clinical Specialist (OCS) examination by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS).

Applications to the program are submitted beginning in August of each year. Please let me know if you have any questions!


  • Create mentors who would teach and guide other therapists throughout their careers
  • Prepare therapists to sit for Specialist Examinations in the area of expertise
  • Foster teamwork, leadership, and collaboration between therapist, physician, and patient
  • Expose the resident to advanced research in order to produce a clinically relevant orthopedic/hand capstone project
  • Provide advanced opportunities of clinical exposure to the subspecialty areas of Manual and Sports Therapy
  • Development of clinicians who treat the whole patient in a caring, ethical manner exceeding patient expectations.


If the resident seizes the opportunity he/she will:

  • Pass the ABPTS Certification examination.
  • Develop the skills and knowledge to become educators in a variety of settings (i.e., clinical, residency, coursework, and/or laboratory instructors).
  • Contribute to the profession of physical therapy through clinical practice, teaching, scholarship, leadership, and service.
  • Become professionally active at the clinical, local, state, national and international level.
  • Demonstrate traits of independent thinking including:
    • Developing an inquiring mind evidenced by asking “high-level” questions
    • Take the perspective of other residents/tutors considering alternative ideas during discussions
    • Demonstrate mental flexibility by modifying their ideas according to best evidence and argumentation
    • Demonstrating a skeptical orientation by adopting a posture of doubt about truth claims and arguments during tutorials and discussion groups
    • Effectively learning to argue by making conceptual claims backed with supporting theory and evidence.


  • Introduction to Research and Scientific Inquiry, 8 hours lecture; ongoing application through tutorials and clinical practice
  • Foundations of Orthopedic Physical Therapy, 24 hours lecture; 240 hours clinical practice
  • Medical Exercise Therapy, 24 hours lecture and 100 hours of clinical practice
  • Advanced Upper Quadrant, 24 hours laboratory, and lecture; 240 hours of upper extremity practice, 240 hours of cervical spine focus
  • Advanced Lower Quadrant, 24 hours laboratory, and lecture; 240 hours of lower extremity practice and 240 hours of thoracolumbar spine focus
  • Clinical Seminar
  • Capstone Project, 25 hours of directed reading, special topic lectures and clinical observation and completion of capstone research project.


  • Chris Dollar, DPT, PT, MTC, OMPT, FAAOMPT
    • Clinical Specialist III
    • Coordinator of Clinical Education
    • Tel: 704-323-2525
    • Fax: 704-323-3993
    • email:
  • Molly Dudick, PT, COMT-, Director Orthopedic Physical Therapy Residency
    • Clinical Specialist II
    • Coordinator of Orthopedic Physical Therapy Residency
  • Carol Green, PT, COMT
    • Clinical Specialist II
  • Chris Gabriel, PT, OCS
    • Clinical Specialist I
  • Matthew Erbe, PT, DPT, OCS, L/ATC
    • Clinical Specialist I
  • Kyle Kolkmann, PT, DPT, OCS
    • Clinical Specialist I
  • Susan Aiken, PT, OCS
    • Clinical Specialist I
  • Susan Odom, Ph.D.
    • Senior Research Scientist


  • All applicants must have a current license to practice physical therapy in North Carolina. This license must not be under suspension, revocation, probationary status or subject to disciplinary proceedings or inquiry.
  • All residents will be employed by OC during their 18-month residency program.
  • All applicants must be active members of the APTA/AOTA in good standing as applicable.
  • All applicants must have current CPR certification.
  • Applicants must submit a completed application in a timely manner in order to be considered for the program.


(If mailing, send applications to OrthoCarolina, 3541 Randolph Road Wendover Bldg. Suite 100, Charlotte, NC 28211 Attn: Chris Dollar)

Application Deadline: September 1

Orthopedic Physical Therapy Residency Program