Sports and rehabilitation clinic to open next week

Students will be able to receive Sports Rehabilitation in Cramer Hall 215. Photo by Erin Caughey/

The Marquette Sports and Rehabilitation Clinic will open Oct. 17 after years of planning.

The clinic, partnered with Student Health Services, will not cause any rise in the student health fee. The clinic will bill patients’ health insurance companies for service.

The center is located in Cramer Hall 215, a former teaching lab. Larry Pan, physical therapy department chairman, said the room was “set up like a clinic” already so costs were minimal.

Pan said the clinic will primarily serve students, but faculty can also receive treatment.

Paula Papanek, exercise science program chairwoman, said there is absolutely a need for this clinic at Marquette.

“We get called weekly from parents and students wondering if we could treat them because they think we have a center on campus,” Papanek said. “We’ve been turning people away for years.”

She said a club sport athlete recently tore his ACL. His family called, after deciding to have surgery over fall break, wanting to know if he could do rehabilitation therapy here. Now he can, thanks to the clinic.

Jeff Wilkens, a 1999 graduate of Marquette’s physical therapy program and a 1997 undergraduate, was hired as the clinic’s director.

Pan said the money to open this center and hire Wilkens is “all coming from the revenue stream that we generate.”

The clinic is open to all students, but Pan said he expects the majority of patients will be club and intramural sports athletes.

Wilkens said the clinic as he understands it will be “geared toward the student (club) athletic population, but it’s not exclusive to that.”

He said the 26 club sport teams do not have as much access to physical therapy services as the Division I athletes at Marquette.

Because the clinic has been in the works for years, Wilkens said he knew about the job before it was posted about a month ago.

Pan said the clinic is only planning on having one director at this time, but it may hire a second person later in the year. In the future, the center may also have a way for students to complete internships under the supervision of the director.

“This is brand new, so we have an understanding of what it will be,” Wilkens said. “But I think time will tell.”

He said the clinic will serve as a full-service physical therapy center on campus and an injury treatment athletic center, and will provide club athletes and students with a “higher level of care.”

“It’s something that I think Marquette really needs on campus,” Wilkens said.

The clinic’s hours are currently by appointment and are subject to change, but will be from about 9 or 10 a.m. to 5 or 6:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, depending on the day.