Haylee Thornley

Haylee Thornley

Hometown: Batavia, NY

Major: Physical Therapy

Graduation Year: 2025 (BS) 2027 (DPT)

Why did you choose Daemen University?

The first time I visited campus I felt very welcomed by the faculty, staff, advisors, and students. I found the small student to faculty ratio created a great learning environment where I would feel supported in my future years at Daemen. I also chose Daemen because of the PT program. It has an excellent reputation and I knew I would be successful here. 

Why did you choose your present major?

I chose to study physical therapy because I wanted to make a difference in the lives of patients. In high school, I spent a lot of time in PT clinics due to two ACL tears. I was devastated, however I found my experience as a learning opportunity. I became fascinated with the mechanics and exercises I performed at therapy and learned something new everyday. I developed relationships with both of my physical therapists and they served as great role models of the profession. They've had a massive impact on my life and I want to give this to my patients one day. 

Please briefly describe your Scholar's Day. 

Scholar's Day was a very exciting and nerve-racking day. The staff, faculty, and students were extremely welcoming and informative. Since Scholar's Day took place during the midst of COVID, it looked different than previous years. However, Daemen did everything in their power to make it an enjoyable day for all of the candidates. The interview itself was intimidating at first, but the best advice I could give is to tell your story and be you. Overall Scholar's Day was great and I look forward to being apart of it in the future. 

Please describe your academic experience at Daemen.

My academic experience at Daemen has been challenging but rewarding. High school and college are very different and becoming acclimated to a new learning environment can present its difficulties. College comes with a lot of independence and it's important to stay on top of school work, prioritize studying, and be organized in order to be successful. The professors at Daemen are always willing to work with you and appreciate questions. There are several resources available to students if you need help and the faculty will not let you do poorly. 

What do you like best about Daemen?

I love the close knit, family feel of the Daemen College community. The class sizes are small enough where the faculty and staff get to know you personally. It's easy to meet new people and develop connections with individuals from all different backgrounds. 

What clubs or organizations have you been a part of here at Daemen University? What kinds of things do they do?

At Daemen I'm apart of the SPTA (Student Physical Therapy Association) as the Pre-Professional Liaison, Business Club, Tour Guide, and Freshmen Orientation Leader.

Please describe any internship, study abroad, service learning or academic experience?

The PT program requires each student to complete 60 hours of observation in a physical therapy setting before the graduate phase of the program. So far, I've completed my hours in my hometown Batavia, NY. These observation hours have provided me with a unique experience to learn more about the profession and develop connections with clinicians and practitioners. 

Do you have a job or jobs on campus? Please provide a brief description. 

I have a job in Batavia at Dunkin' Donuts and a job on campus as a Tour Guide. As a Tour Guide, I give tours to prospective students and their families. Additionally, I work at many different events and in the Office of Admissions, assisting with small daily tasks as a part of this position. 

What is your favorite spot to stop by in town?

My favorite spot to stop by in town is Squeeze Juicery. 

What piece of advice would you give to prospective students? 

The piece of advice I would give to prospective students is to be yourself and not be afraid to try new things. The first year at college is scary and intimidating. Everyone feels alone and confused at first, but putting yourself out there, attending events, and joining clubs makes the transition into college easier.