Sports Physical Therapy Clinical Residency Program

Massachusetts General Hospital Sports Physical Therapy has partnered with the Department of Physical Therapy, Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences at Northeastern University to offer a 13-month full-time clinical residency program for physical therapists interested in pursuing a career in sports physical therapy.


The mission of the Massachusetts General Hospital / Northeastern University Department of Physical Therapy, Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences Sports Physical Therapy Residency Program is to advance the knowledge and clinical competency of sports physical therapists as well as to foster a culture of continued learning and scientific inquiry while demonstrating a commitment to patients, students and athletes at all levels.

The mission is achieved through academic, research and clinical collaboration promoting robust learning experiences and a unique opportunity to be an integral part of an interprofessional health care system working with recreational, high school, collegiate and professional athletes.

ABPTRFE Accredited Program Color Rgb Small

Year Accredited: 2015, 2020
Number of graduates: 15
Graduation Rate: 100%
SCS Exam Pass Rate: 93%

American Board of Physical Therapy Residency and Fellowship Education — ABPTRFE


  1. The MGH / NU Sports Physical Therapy Residency Program supports the mission of the Northeastern University Department of Physical Therapy, Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences. The Department of Physical Therapy, Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences’ mission is to impact the health and wellbeing of the global community by developing leaders in physical therapy, movement, and rehabilitation sciences through interprofessional experiential education, translational research, and excellence in clinical practice.
  2. The MGH / NU Sports Physical Therapy Residency Program supports the mission of the Massachusetts General Hospital. The mission of the Massachusetts General Hospital is Guided by the needs of our patients and their families, Massachusetts General Hospital aims to deliver the very best health care in a safe, compassionate environment; to advance that care through innovative research and education; and to improve the health and well-being of the diverse communities we serve.
  3. The MGH / NU Sports Physical Therapy Residency Program maintains American Board of Physical Therapy Residency and Fellowship Education (ABPTRFE) accreditation.
  4. Residents will demonstrate advanced knowledge and skills in sports physical therapy.
  5. Provide residents with a high-quality, interprofessional sports physical therapy experience.
  6. Within five years post completion of the residency program, graduates will demonstrate qualities of an advanced clinician including serving as an educator, providing service to the profession and being active with scholarly activity.
  7. The MGH / NU Sports Physical Therapy Residency Program is sustainable.

Program Outcomes

  1. Provide excellent, evidence-based patient care by obtaining the knowledge, skills and abilities of an advanced practice physical therapist in sports and musculoskeletal care.
  2. Demonstrate specialist level clinical decision making and psychomotor skill in sports/musculoskeletal examination and intervention.
  3. Add value to the Northeastern University Department of Physical Therapy, Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences and Mass General Sports Physical Therapy Service. Demonstrate professionalism in communication, instruction and collaboration.
  4. Communicate with others such as patients/clients/athletes, referral sources, payers, administrators, physicians, athletic trainers, and other members of the health care team to effectively advocate for the patient/client/athlete and the profession.
  5. Be prepared to sit for the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS) Sports Specialty Certification Exam.

Clinical Experiences

MGH Sports Physical Therapy clinic responsibilities begin in July and continue throughout the entire sports clinical residency program (13 months). Athletic venue coverage typically begins in August. The resident will participate in 30 hours of patient care combined in-clinic and at athletic venue/athletic training room. The resident’s caseload will consist of a wide variety of orthopedic and sports related conditions throughout all body regions.

In addition to the clinic schedule, there will be ongoing athletic venue coverage and athletic training room opportunities. These opportunities occur throughout the thirteen-month residency and are specific to athletic season rather than direct correlation with curricular content. The athletic venue exposure will include but not be limited to the following:

PT Clinical Residency

  • Northeastern University Athletics: Venue and Athletic Training Room
  • BAA 5K, 10K, Half Marathon medical coverage
  • BAA Boston Marathon medical coverage
  • Special Olympics Summer Games medical coverage
  • MGH Sports Physical Therapy Clinic (web link)

Clinic Sites for the Sports PT Residency

Clinical Mentoring

The mentoring will occur throughout the entire thirteen month experience. There will be two 120 minutes unopposed mentoring sessions scheduled with the Residency Director each week. During these sessions the resident provides care and the Residency Director observes the resident’s patient care and provides mentoring to the resident. There will be thirty minutes pre and post patient encounter along with the thirty to sixty minutes for the patient encounter itself. In addition to the time that is scheduled each week with the Residency Director there will be ongoing opportunities for mentoring and discussion during athletic venue experiences with other program faculty.

Didactic Experiences

  • The twelve monograph series “Current Concepts in Orthopedic Physical Therapy” will be utilized in a self-study fashion with discussion following each monograph.
  • The resident will also complete the Sports Certified Specialist Examination Prep course monographs. These monographs will also be utilized in a self-study fashion with discussion after completion of each monograph.
  • The resident is also required to complete two courses at Northeastern University during the residency: PT5165 Sports Medicine: Managing the Injured Athlete and PT6233 Advanced Clinical Processes: Special Topics in Orthopedics and Sports Medicine.
  • The resident’s learning will be further supplemented by weekly journal review sessions. These sessions will be of current literature that coincides with content that follows monograph review as well as content within the academic teaching curriculum. Review sessions will include the resident, Residency Director as well as other clinical staff at the MGH Sports Physical Therapy clinic in order to have a robust discussion and facilitate critical thinking.
  • The resident will also have consistent access to other educational opportunities to enhance the learning experience. The additional opportunities may include:
    • Department of Orthopedic Surgery Grand Rounds at MGH
    • Sports Medicine and Shoulder Conference at MGH
    • Mass General Brigham Sports Medicine Conference
    • Attendance at local and national conferences supported by the program
      • APTA of MA Annual Conference
      • AASPT Annual Meeting and Scientific Conference
      • APTA Combined Sections Meeting
      • Harvard Sports Medicine Conference
      • MGH Primary Care Orthopaedics Conference

Experiential Education

Residents utilize a variety of experiential learning opportunities to further develop clinical reasoning skills within sports physical therapy including simulation learning and learning assessment activities.  Through simulation learning students are able to actively engage in patient management of acute sports related injuries and examine and refine their expertise.


SIM Lab Trans
Sim Image 2

Teaching Experience

The resident will have the opportunity to instruct in the DPT program at Northeastern University. They will be a lab teaching assistant in the Musculoskeletal Management courses with the Residency Director who will provide ongoing mentoring to promote professional development as an educator. The resident will be expected to review and prepare for the material being covered in each lab session which will coordinate much of the didactic curriculum embedded in the residency. The resident will be involved with presenting information to the students, assisting with providing feedback to students on technique, promoting high level clinical decision making during case discussions as well as providing feedback specific to performance on written and practical examinations.


Colgan — Northeastern University

Kaitlyn Colgan

Dr. Kaitlyn “Katie” Colgan grew up in New Hyde Park, NY, where she was an avid soccer, lacrosse and track athlete. Through rehabilitation from these sports, she developed a passion for physical therapy and pursued a Rehabilitation Science degree with a certificate in Pathokinesiology from the University of Pittsburgh. She continued her graduate schooling at Pitt as well, completing her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree in 2020.

During her graduate study, Katie maintained close contact with athletic rehabilitation by serving as a member of an interprofessional team treating the varsity athletes at St. Vincent College, in addition to working with athletes of all levels at multiple sports medicine clinics within the Pittsburgh area. Her clinical passions lie mainly with biomechanical and running analysis, lower extremity injury management and sports-related concussion. Katie’s commitment to her patients and the profession are illustrated by her development of an Athlete Screening Program which served to provide musculoskeletal screening to local community athletes to reduce injury and enhance performance. She also serves as a member of the Communications Committee of the American Academy of Sports Physical Therapy, organizing networking events for members at national conferences. Outside of her scholastic pursuits, she is an avid fan of New York sports teams.

Chiesa — Northeastern

Christen Chiesa

Dr. Christen Chiesa of Pittsburgh, PA attended Central Michigan University in Mt Pleasant, MI for her undergraduate degree. While at CMU, she played on the varsity women’s soccer team as she pursued a major in Kinesiology and minors in Psychology and Leadership. Following her graduation from CMU in 2016, Christen returned to Pittsburgh to earn her degree as a Doctor of Physical Therapy at the University of Pittsburgh in 2020. During her time in the graduate program she was able to partake in multiple opportunities outside of the classroom, including the formation of a student-run adaptive training program for those with physical disabilities in the Greater Pittsburgh area. Christen gained invaluable experience during her clinical rotations, many of which were based in multidisciplinary sports medicine clinics.

As a multi-sport athlete growing up and eventual collegiate soccer player, Christen has always had a passion for sports at the local, collegiate, and professional level. She believes that her past sport participation, especially at high levels of competition, has given her unique insight into the physical, psychological, and situational stressors that must be addressed while rehabilitating an athlete. She quickly realized that physical therapy would provide her with the opportunity to pursue her passion while providing a vital service to others. Currently, Christen has interests in concussion management, adaptive sports, and ACL rehabilitation as subspecialties of sports physical therapy.

Erin Holt

Erin Holt

Dr. Erin Holt grew up in Lancaster, Pennsylvania where she participated in basketball, lacrosse,
and field hockey. Through these experiences, she sparked a strong interest in pursuing a career in
sports medicine. From here, Erin attended Penn State University for her undergraduate degree,
earning a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology with a minor in Psychology. Additionally, she
completed an Honors Thesis centered around improving community physical activity levels
through the messaging on wearable devices. She then went on to receive her Doctor of Physical
Therapy from the University of Pittsburgh.

During her final year of study at Pitt, she completed an internship with the University of
Pittsburgh’s men’s football team. Working in a collegiate level athletic training room gave her
the opportunity to become a part of a multidisciplinary sports medicine team, providing care for
high level athletes both on and off the field. She also worked for the Physical Therapy
department as a teaching assistant for graduate level courses. Through Erin’s clinical and work
experience, she has developed a passion for teaching as well as treating a wide variety of high-
level and recreational athletes. Her specific clinical interests include evaluating psychological
readiness of return to sport, integrating a cognitive component in ACL rehabilitation, and
merging the rehabilitation process with strength and conditioning and sports performance.

Molly Harkins

Molly Harkins

Dr. Molly Harkins grew up in Pittsburgh, PA where she was a multi-sport athlete, eventually deciding to join the rowing team at Duquesne University during her undergraduate years. While at Duquesne, she completed her undergraduate degree in Athletic Training. Molly completed a full season Athletic Training internship with the Pittsburgh Steelers, an experience which confirmed her commitment to pursue a career in sports medicine and physical therapy. Molly completed her post-graduate studies at Washington University in St. Louis, where she earned her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree in 2022.

During her graduate studies, Molly continued to gain experience working with athletes as an athletic trainer and through clinical experiences. Outside the classroom, Molly enjoyed volunteering with a community organization that provided children with disabilities the opportunity to participate in a variety of sporting events and competitions. Through her experience, Molly has developed the capability and passion for assisting all individuals with achieving their rehabilitation or performance goals. Molly’s current clinical interests are in the areas of return to sport following lower extremity injury, manual therapy techniques as well as integrating rehabilitation with sports performance and strength and conditioning.

Apply for MGH/Northeastern University Sports Physical Therapy Clinical Residency Program

Application Deadline: December 1

Please complete the online application through RF-PTCAS.

Application Requirements

Within the online application you will be required to upload/complete:

  • Resume/Curriculum vitae
  • Three Letters of Recommendation. One letter should be from a former supervisor or clinical instructor you worked with, one should be from a faculty member at the institution you received your DPT degree from, and then a third of your choice.
  • Copy of official transcript from the College/University you received your PT degree from.
  • Copy of all professional licenses (MA state licensure required before beginning residency program)
  • Copy of APTA membership and APTA of Massachusetts Membership (required)
  • Copy of completion of one of the following: EMT licensure, ATC licensure, or completion/registration for Emergency Response Course (one of these needs to be completed before beginning residency program).
  • Essay – please answer each part individually in no more than 300 words each.
    • Discuss your interest in pursuing a sports physical therapy residency.
    • Please discuss the qualities you possess that would make you a strong candidate for the MGH/NU Sports Physical Therapy Clinical Residency Program.
    • Please list three components that you feel make up an exceptional residency experience.
    • Please provide three personal goals for the 13 month MGH/NU Sports Physical Therapy Clinical Residency Program.
    • Discuss what it means to be a leader in the field of Sports Physical Therapy.


In addition to the RF-PTCAS, complete the application form and submit with $50 non-refundable fee (Check made out to “Northeastern University”). 

Application form, fee and any additional documentation should be post marked by December 1 and mailed to the following address:

David Nolan, PT, DPT, MS, OCS, SCS, CSCS
Director, Sports Physical Therapy Clinical Residency Program:
Northeastern University Department of Physical Therapy, Movement and Rehab Sciences
301 Robinson Hall
360 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115
617-373-5268 (Office)
[email protected] (E-Mail)

Sports Physical Therapy Clinical Residency Important Dates:

Application Deadline: December 1, 2022

Interview Day: January 19, 2023

Notification Day: March 6, 2023

Residency Start Date: July 3, 2023

Residency End Date: July 31, 2024