SPRINGFIELD — Springfield College (SC) physical therapy major Marisa Babb recently received the Ruth Hall Clinical Fellowship Award, the American Physical Therapy Assoc. of Massachusetts’ highest honor for students enrolled in doctor of physical therapy programs.
This award is designed to recognize a student who demonstrates the professional qualities of dedication and care in the areas of interpersonal relationships, professional behavior in clinical and academic settings, and excellence in academic and clinical performance.
Babb has maintained a 3.91 grade point average in SC’s doctor of physical therapy program. She has been a leader among her peers, serving as the head resident assistant and mentoring more than 40 undergraduate students on the campus. In May, Babb received the highest non-academic award given at Springfield College, the Springfield College PRIDE award, for her service to the campus community.
During her clinical work at the Weldon Rehabilitation Hospital at Mercy Medical Center, Babb demonstrated empathy and stability within the chaotic hospital setting.
“She worked with a particularly emotionally taxing case load, including multiple patients and families facing end-of-life scenarios, women with young children who developed significant nervous-system dysfunction, patients with severe challenges adjusting to limb loss, and individuals with psychosomatic dysfunction,” said Babb’s clinical instructor, Dr. Lauren McGrath, who received a bachelor’s degree from Springfield College in 2009 and a doctor of physical therapy degree from Springfield College in 2011. “Babb’s consideration of how emotional stress states affect movement behavior and learning provided her with patience and understanding necessary to optimize a healing environment for her patients.”
In addition to her academic success and service to others, Babb is a talented singer and dancer, has been a member of the college dance and choral groups, and, in her free time, works part-time teaching dance to children at a local dance studio.
The award’s namesake, Ruth Hall, dedicated her career to the profession of physical therapy and was devoted to quality patient care, high standards of ethical practice, and a genuine love of humanity.