A love of science, anatomy and people is a perfect career for Emily Rust

Written by Anne Endicott – Outlook

When you find yourself in need of physical therapy, the process isn’t quite as painful if your therapist has been there and done that.

Twenty-seven-year-old Emily Rust is an avid outdoorsman and former figure skater who once found herself under the care of a physical therapist following a sports injury in high school. The experience launched an unexpected career and has led her into advanced training in manual therapy, women’s health and orthopedics.

Emily is a Colorado native who ended up in Oregon via a circuitous route. She earned her undergraduate degree in biology at Loyola University in Chicago and went on to complete her doctorate in physical therapy at Northwestern University. After clinical rotations in Chicago and Austin, Texas, she headed west, landing in Beaverton to finish her rotation in a clinic owned by Therapeutic Associates. It was there she met John Parr, director of physical therapy for the company’s Gresham office, who hired the spunky brunette three years ago.

How did you become interested in your field?

“My grandfather was a family practitioner and my uncle was a surgeon. I worked in my grandfather’s office one summer and I was in and out of there a lot, with a broken arm and things. I did think about medical school, but surgery wasn’t what I wanted to do day-to-day. I really liked science and the body, but I also really like talking to people. This was a great way to combine the two. You get to do this really neat stuff with science and the body, but you also get to have this wonderful personal relationship with your patients.”

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