If things had gone just slightly different in my life, this post would be read on a physical therapy website instead of McKinstry’s blog.
I was born in San Carlos, CA, and was raised in Redmond, WA. I grew up playing soccer and basketball, and eventually got into lacrosse when I saw people whacking each other with sticks at a park, and my 13-year-old brain thought that that would be fun. As my bones grew and my joints became messed up, I started to rack up the injuries. I was in and out of physical therapy so much I was on a first name basis with most of the physical therapists in my area. It was not a surprise that as I went into high school, I set a course to get myself into a college where I could major in kinesiology. However, while all of this was going on, I had been feeling ill, ever since the start of 7th grade. Eventually, in 11th grade, I figured enough was enough, and took time away from school to seek medical help to figure out what was going on. During this break from school, my values started to shift. I started to think more about how I could help others rather than just myself. Instead of just working with a few specific patients, I wanted to help the largest number of people I possibly could. After doing research, and talking with engineers, I decided I could help a lot of people by contributing to the renewable energies field. I chose mechanical and manufacturing engineering as a major because it matched my goals and skill set to a tee, and I chose to attend Oregon State because it was the perfect location. Not too far from my family and home, but also not too close.[Read more…]