A post I recently saw on the www.oandp.com forum made me stop and think back to the days I was a resident ( not too long ago). There are a few thoughts that I may expand on later; they are not in any particular order.
1) Education is important (you cannot get certified without it).
2) Residency is more important! Choose your mentor(s) wisely.
3) Choose your residency based on the experience you will gain not on the amount of money you will make.
4) Do not balk at a reasonable non-competition agreement, a company will be imparting a great deal of knowledge on you and doing you a huge favor to share it, they do not want you going next door. (see point number 2)
5) Do the small things. (Sweep floors, clean plaster traps, sew, pour plaster, grind, help technicians). The small things are what make you stand out.
6) Work for a big national chain like Hanger. You will learn patient care and the business aspect of Orthotics and Prosthetics. There is a saying, “The worst run Hanger office is better run (business wise) than the best run private office.” That is a compliment to Hanger and it is true!
7) You need to work for a company that sees a good volume of patients as well as a diverse population of patients.