Physical Therapy Residency Program

The OrthoCarolina orthopedic physical therapy/hand therapy residency is an 18 month, post-professional clinical and didactic education experience designed for physical therapists and occupational therapists who wish to significantly advance their preparation as a specialty provider of orthopedic patient care services.


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

“The mission of the OrthoCarolina Residency in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy and Hand 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 in Orthopedic Physical Therapy and Hand Therapy are 18 month, post-professional clinical and didactic education experiences designed for physical therapists and occupational therapists who wish to significantly advance their preparation as a specialty provider of orthopedic patient care services. These residencies combine ongoing clinical mentoring with a theoretical basis for advanced practice and scientific inquiry. Residents accepted into the program will be full-time employees of OrthoCarolina salaried with benefits.


Both Hand Therapy and Orthopedic Physical Therap[y residency programs provide 18 month long courses of didactic and clinical education. These programs provide the equivalent of 18 semester credit hours of instruction and clinical experience and are intended to prepare the resident to sit for the Orthopedic Clinical Specialist (OCS) examination by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS) in the case of the orthopedic physical therapy residency and the Certified Hand Therapist (CHT) examination of the Hand Therapy Certification Commission in the case of the hand therapy residency. The orthopedic physical therapy resident (see Appendix A) and hand therapy resident (see Appendix B) would complete a minimum of 1500 hours of supervised clinical practice including laboratory and lecture study. These courses of study would culminate in the completion of staged oral, written and practical examinations in an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) format administered by a board of faculty examiners.


  •  Create mentors who would teach and guide other therapists throughout their careers
  •  Prepare therapists to sit for Specialist Examinations in 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 Hand, 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 or the Hand Therapy Certification Commission Certified Hand Therapist (CHT) examinations respectively
  • 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/occupational 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 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  thoraco-lumbar spine focus
  •  Clinical Seminar
  •  Capstone Project, 25 hours of directed reading, special topic lectures and clinical observation and completion of capstone research project.

Orthopedic Physical Therapy Residency Faculty

  • Chris Dollar, DPT, PT, MTC, OMPT, FAAOMPT -

             OrthoCarolina Residency Executive Director

             3541 Randolph Road, Suite 100

             Charlotte, NC 28211

             Tel: 704-323-2530

             Fax: 704-323-3993 

  • Molly Dudick, PT, COMT-, Director Orthopedic Physcial Therapy Residency
  • Carol Green, PT, COMT
  • Chris Gabriel, PT, OCS
  • Matthew Erbe, DPT, PT, L/ATC
  • Jeff Deguire, PT, COMT
  • Katherine White, DPT, PT, OCS
  • Susan Odum, Ph.D.

  •  All applicants must have a current license to practice physical therapy or occupational 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.
  •  Applicant’s must submit a completed application in a timely manner in order to be considered for the program. 


Application Deadline: September 1