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John Boyer

Injuries are an unfortunate reality for many athletes. As a former professional basketball player, John Boyer experienced his fair share of strains, sprains and fractures—along with an unexpected upside.

 “Some of my most rewarding experiences and relationships were made through the process of recovering from these injuries and setbacks in order to return to compete,” said Boyer. “The motivation, inspiration and rehabilitative care that I experienced are things I want to pass on to others as a physical therapist.”

The Hollidaysburg, Pa., native, now finishing up the graduate portion of the DPT program, decided to attend UB for a variety of reasons. “UB had the feeling of a family environment in every aspect of the college experience,” he said. “The professors and advisors I met made me feel comfortable that they would help me stay on track with my academic path and meet my goal of attending the physical therapy program.”

UB’s Division I basketball team was also a key draw, and Boyer played four seasons with the Buffalo Bulls before playing professionally in Spain, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. UB highlights include a stint as the nation’s leader in assist-to-turnover ratio in 2010—the first Buffalo player to lead the nation in a statistical category since 1976—and being named to the Academic All-MAC men’s basketball team for excellence in athletics and academics.

“The basketball program welcomed me with open arms and made me feel at home from the first minute I stepped on campus—I still call them family to this day.”

Boyer said he is lucky to experience camaraderie off the court as well, among his classmates and faculty members in the DPT program. “I enjoy the day-to-day interaction, especially the open discussions that are encouraged among class members and professors that broaden the way we think about physical therapy issues,” he said.

Reflecting on his unique combination of athletic and academic experiences, Boyer said it will help him once he is a practicing physical therapist.