Physical Therapy Software Entrepreneur Launches Rizing Tide Foundation, Announces Scholarship Program to Promote Diversity & Inclusion in PT

Rizing Tide

Rizing Tide, a foundation dedicated to inspiring more diversity and inclusiveness in the physical therapy (PT) workforce, is proud to announce five scholarship opportunities for promising BIPOC students on the path to pursuing their Doctorate of Physical Therapy (DPT) or who will be attending a PT residency program. Scholarship recipients are selected by a committee and awarded by merit. The first round includes five scholarships between $10,000 and $14,000 each.

Rizing Tide was founded by Dr. Heidi Jannenga, physical therapist and co-founder of WebPT, to help build a more diverse and inclusive PT industry. As a clinician and longtime industry advocate, Jannenga recognizes every patient deserves to feel represented by their healthcare provider. Yet, the industry currently falls short. While 39.9% of the U.S. population identifies as BIPOC, only 22.2% of employed PTs identify as BIPOC. And according to the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), 49.95% fewer BIPOC applicants who use the PT Centralized Application Service are accepted into a program compared to their white counterparts.

“There’s no question a diversity gap exists in the PT space, and it’s to the detriment of our patients who want to see themselves in their providers,” said Jannenga. “It’s my sincere hope that Rizing Tide and our initial cohort of scholarship winners will be the start of a growing community dedicated to bringing awareness to this issue in PT, and the beginning of institutional change. This is just the beginning because we are truly better when we “rize” together!”

Rizing Tide will grant five scholarships to students pursuing physical therapy programs in two categories:

  • The CrestScholarship will be awarded to three incoming PT students who are pursuing a DPT degree. Applicants must be either undergraduate students who are going on to attend graduate school or PTAs entering a bridge PT program. Each Crest scholarship awards up to $14,000 annually — and may be renewed twice. The deadline for applications for the Crest Scholarship is Aug. 20, 2021.
  • The SurgeScholarship will be awarded to two graduating DPT students or established PTs, who are entering an accredited residency program. Each scholarship will amount to a one-time award of up to $10,000. The deadline for applications for the Surge Scholarship is Nov. 1, 2021.

Applications may be submitted at or for more information on how to apply for a scholarship, explore eligibility requirements and learn about the selection process here.

Rizing Tide was founded in 2020 by Heidi Jannenga, PT, DPT, ATC to help bridge the diversity gap in the physical therapy industry. She is the co-founder of WebPT and a physical therapist with more than 25 years of experience in the rehab therapy world. The foundation awards yearly scholarships to BIPOC therapists and PT students to make a meaningful, generational impact on the industry.

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