This week’s spotlight features F. Scott Feil, a PT who is Core Faculty at University of St. Augustine, and has many side gigs!
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What is your full name, title, and company name for your current, primary role?
F Scott Feil, PT, DPT, EdD, Cert-APHPT – Core Faculty, University of St Augustine
What additional roles do you currently have?
Where are you located?
Where did you go to PT school, and what year did you graduate?
MPT – East Carolina University, 2005 / DPT – U of St Augustine, 2011/ EdD – U of St Augustine, 2018
What did you do when you first finished school, and for how long?
Traveling PT for 1 year (Middle of Nowhere, TX/ Honolulu, HI / Asheville, NC)
In what setting(s) did you work, and what types of patients did you treat?
SNF, home health, then outpatient for the next decade, before settling back into SNF and HHPT for the last 5 years—before ultimately going into academia full time.
What did you enjoy about your early roles? What didn’t you enjoy?
Traveling was amazing. I got to see so many cool places in the US.
What else have you done since then, prior to your current role?
Consulting and business coaching and adjunct professor for Baylor’s new 2-year DPT program.
When and why did you decide to do something non-clinical?
When COVID hit the SNF I was in, there were 30 patients and 35 staff members who tested positive.
With my wife being an already immunocompromised Type-1 diabetic, I felt like it was a good time to step away from clinical and into full-time academia.
What are you doing these days?
I teach full time as core faculty for the University of St Augustine, and I run my three side hustle businesses in my free time.
Are you still treating patients, or are you solely non-clinical?
After moving from Waco, TX (population 100,000) to Wimberley, TX (population 4,000) to be closer to campus, I have not yet resumed seeing patients for my cash-pay mobile PT business.
How long have you been in your current role?
About 2 years.
Did you get any special certifications or training along the way to help you get into your current role?
My EdD likely helped me land my full time core faculty position. It’s not completely necessary, as board certifications can also help. I do not currently have a board certification, so I feel the EdD was a large factor in my landing my core faculty role.
How did you find your job? Did you apply or find it through a connection?
I got my job by staying in touch with my network from U of St Augustine. Through that, I heard about an opening that may be happening right when I was looking to step away from the clinical aspect of things.
Did you do anything special to your resume and cover letter to land the job?
Completely redid my resume as a CAPTE formatted CV.
What was the interview like for the role?
LONG and INTENSE.
It was a pre-interview with the head of the program, and then a full-day interview with a selection committee, the faculty, HR and the head of the department. That was followed by a one-hour presentation I had to put on to show my teaching style.
When did you start your business(es)?
I started my first of 3 businesses 4 years ago (2017).
Where did you get the idea for your business(es)?
I host the Healthcare Education Transformation Podcast, and the final question of “What aspect of higher education would you change?” had a number one most common answer of “Cost.”
So, I wrote my book, and used my EdD to create the curriculum for a course on starting multiple revenue streams to help pay off student loans.
What is your primary business, and what types of products or services do you offer?
PTEducator.com is my main online business and we offer a few books, plus several practical business type courses for healthcare providers.
How have people reacted to you leaving patient care?
Very positive and supportive.
What’s a typical day or week in the life like for you? What types of tasks and responsibilities fill your time?
32 hours per week teaching (online and live combination), and 18-28 hours on my side hustle businesses.
What are some of the rewards of your role? What are the biggest challenges?
I love educating and molding young minds; however, it’s hard to preach how great a profession PT is when I have kind of left it (at least clinically speaking).
I do lead with the caveat that you need to leverage the degree appropriately, and then you can make it a wonderful career.
How did your clinical background prepare you for this role? Which skills transferred?
Real-world experience was great to bring into the teaching world, because I can draw from those experiences.
Roughly speaking, how are the hours and pay compared to patient care?
I am getting paid as much, if not more than I was clinically. But you’ll want to keep in mind that pay can vary, based on in-state versus private universities.
What type of person do you think would do well as core faculty?
I think anyone who is focused and can plan long-term tasks would be good for academia. You need focus and determination to climb the ladder of experience and research required in academia.
Do you work remotely or onsite?
80% remotely and 20% in person on campus for labs–it is a FLEX program.
Does USA hire PT, OT, or SLP professionals into non-clinical roles?
U of St Augustine employs PTs, OTs, and SLPs for their core faculty.
Did you read any books, take any courses, or do anything special overall to get you where you are today?
I wrote my book about my experience with multiple revenue streams: PT Educator Student Debt Eliminator.
What is a typical career path for someone who is core faculty at a university?
You typically start as a lab assistant or guest lecturer, and if you like it, pursue adjunct faculty or contributing faculty.
If you really find teaching is a passion of yours, you should try for a core faculty position so you can teach full-time. I recommend that you look into a terminal degree ASAP while you’re teaching or lab instructing, as some schools or jobs will help pay for your terminal degree if you’re already working for them in some capacity.
What is next for you? What are your high-level career aspirations?
I think I would like to climb the ranks from assistant professor, to associate professor, to full professor, to head of a program.
What would you recommend to someone who is considering going into a core faculty role?
Start by dipping your toes in the waters of academia. You can become a PTA instructor at a community college, or you can sign up as a lab assistant at a PT or PTA program.
What would you like to change most in your profession, and why? How would you propose doing so?
Once again… I agree that the cost of a DPT education is too high.
What career advice would you give yourself that you wish you had during school?
Invest in yourself and your businesses ASAP (even while you are in grad school, if possible).
What would you teach to today’s graduate students in your profession, if you had the opportunity?
I am fortunate enough that I am teaching, and I try to teach them that clinical physical therapy (or whatever rehab profession you are in) should only be the tip of your iceberg. The skill sets that you gain during the grad school journey will serve you in many other avenues other than just PT.
Do you have any special advice for others who want to follow in your footsteps?
Interested in academia, too? It’s just one of the many career paths we cover in Non-Clinical 101! And yes, you’ll get a CV template for applying for academia roles!