Let’s talk about the University of Pittsburgh’s DPT Hybrid immersions and my experience with flights, lodging, food, transportation—and all of the things in between. I know it can be overwhelming to think about practicing and acing hands-on skills in a little over a week. I have good news—this is knowledge you will ALREADY have through the program’s online instruction and skills you will already be practicing at home. The immersion is a place to get feedback and perfect these skills a little further.
I’m based in Los Angeles, so I usually fly to Pittsburgh a few days before the start of the immersion. They begin on Monday, but I always aim to get to Pittsburgh on Saturday to account for possible delays due to weather, or other factors. My biggest tip is whether you’re driving or flying, give yourself some time! The last thing you want is to miss out on these special opportunities to practice your hands-on skills with faculty. Although, if you have issues traveling, don’t worry. The faculty and staff are understanding. It all works out, so try not to stress.
Let’s talk about housing and transportation; rooming with classmates is your best bet. Finding an Airbnb with one or two classmates helps you save some money, allows you to carpool and makes it easier to have study sessions closer to practical exams. Personally, I stay with my friend outside of the city and drive with my other friend Tatum (who is local to Pittsburgh)! While it takes some extra time in the morning to pick people up, it has worked best for us and we are able to save money on parking fees.
Immersion days are jam-packed with labs, breaks and various “open” labs. Utilize this time and know when to give yourself a break! While at the David Lawrence Convention Center, where the immersions are held, there are lots of places to get lunch (like my personal favorites Condados and La Prima). If you feel like bringing your own lunch, we have a fridge to store everything as well as a microwave to heat up meals. While this is a time to learn, be sure to have fun and take breaks. Remember, overworking yourself can do more harm than good. And let’s not forget to mention the best part of it all—meeting and spending time with your classmates in real life! To see what life as a Pitt DPT hybrid looks like, check out our Instagram account @pittpt_students.
Written by: Daniella Torres
Student, DPT Class of 2023