School of Health Professions

Health Professions Workforce Symposium

Health Professions Workforce Symposium banner

Join us for an evening of presentations and thoughtful discussion with national leaders in physical therapy, the PA field and health and wellness coaching.

Event Details:

Event Host:

Forister Picture

Glenn Forister, PhD, PA-C
Dean, School of Health Professions

About Dean Forister

Dr. Forister has been with HSC as Dean of the School of Health Professions since 2019. Prior to coming to HSC, he served as Division Head of Physician Assistant Education in the School of Medicine at Oregon Health & Science University. He has a Master of Physician Assistant Studies degree from the University of Nebraska, a Master of Science degree in clinical investigation from the University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio (UTHSCSA), and a PhD in Education and Human Resource Development from Texas A&M University. Dean Forister has practiced in orthopedic surgery, family medicine and urgent care. He also served as a PA in the Medical Specialty Corps of the U.S. Army/Army Reserve from 2000 to 2008.



Ej HeadshotErika Jackson, MCC, MLHR, NBC-HW, Chief Coaching Officer, Wellcoaches


Erika Jackson is the Chief Coaching Officer for Wellcoaches Corporation, leading the development of training and curriculum to build excellent skills for thousands of coaches around the world. After earning a Master’s Degree focused on Human Resources and adult learning, she led training organizations in Fortune 500 and governmental organizations. With thousands of hours of coaching experience, Erika is a Master Certified Coach and a National Board Certified Coach. She is also a mentor coachand examiner for the International Coach Federation (ICF), serves on the Program Approval Commission for the National Board for Health and Wellness Coaching (NBHWC) and is the Chair of the Health and Wellness Coaching Member Interest Group for the American College of Lifestyle Medicine (ACLM). In addition to her contributions to coaching research, she is co-author of the peer-reviewed Coaching Psychology Manual published by Wolters Kluwer, the Behavior Change component of the ACLM Board Review Course, and A Pilot Study of Health & Wellness Coaching for Fibromyalgia. Erika is also an instructional design consultant for ImprovEdge, combining neuroscience and improvisation, and volunteer instructional designer for Braver Angels, designing workshops that bring Americans together to bridge the partisan divide. She co-founded a regional organization designed to promote anti-racism in her rural community. And, for fun, Erika launched a community theatre and sings in a band with her husband and children.

Taramanal2021headshotTara Jo Manal, PT, DPT, FAPTA, Senior Vice President, Scientific Affairs, American Physical Therapy Association


Dr. Manal leads the Research, Practice, Innovation and Career Advancement divisions within the APTA. Her unit produces professional education opportunities for clinicians, reports on the profession, the Physical Therapy Journal, practice advisories, and this year an updated Guide to PT Practice and APTA Research Agenda. Prior to joining APTA, Dr. Manal was the University of Delaware Director of Physical Therapy Clinical Services and Director of the UD Residency Training Programs and Associate Professor for 28 years. She is dual certified (Emeritus) as a Sports and Orthopedic Physical Therapy Clinical Specialist and an Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy. Tara has received numerous awards at the National level for Excellence in Teaching and Service and is an international speaker on areas of rehabilitation. She publishes in the area of injury and rehabilitation of the spine and knee and was founding co-chair of the American Physical Therapy Association initiative, a clinician portal aimed at bringing evidence to the front line of clinical practice and the Choosing Wisely campaign “Top 5 things Physical Therapists should not do” an American Board of Internal Medicine initiative to improve healthcare outcomes. Dr. Manal gave the 2017 Maley Lecture on the role of clinical chaos in daily clinical practice. She recently held a position on the State of Delaware Innovation in Healthcare Practice and Education Committee and is a Catherine Worthingham Fellow of the American Physical Therapy Association.

Tpick Half Smile 2Todd Pickard, MMSc, PA-C, DFAAPA, FASCO, Vice President and Speaker of the House, American Academy of Physician Associates


Todd Pickard is currently the Executive Director, Advance Practice in the Office of the Chief Medical Executive. He works closely with other APP leadership to lead over 1,100 APRNs and PAs. He has worked at the University of Texas Medical Center for over 25 years as a PA. His clinical practice has included Urology, Breast Medical Oncology, GI Medical Oncology, Head & Neck Medical Oncology and Clinical Cancer Prevention.

Following keynote speeches from our esteemed guests, we will engage in a panel discussion between the speakers and the School of Health Professions department chairs on workforce challenges and opportunities within the health professions.

School of Health Professions Department Chairs:

  • Lauren Dobbs, MMS, PA-C, Physician Assistant Studies
  • Michael Furtado, PT, DPT, EdD, Physical Therapy
  • Misti Zablosky, PhD, LAT, CHWC, DipACLM, Personalized Health and Well-Being


Sep 21 2023


5:00 pm