At a Glance
Degree: Physical Therapy
Why physical therapy? "Treating patients and seeing them through their recovery is what I enjoy the most."
Lou Coiro ’82 didn’t know what he wanted to do after he graduated high school. At a UML college fair, he discovered the new physical therapy program and was intrigued by the idea of helping people. Four decades later, he’s still at it, happy that he found a profession that he loves.
During his long career, Coiro has opened two physical therapy clinics in Tewksbury and Chelmsford, Massachusetts, treated thousands of patients and hired many UMass Lowell students.
“Most of the students we hire are undergraduates seeking admission into a Doctor of Physical Therapy program,” says Coiro. “We provide them the opportunity to experience the profession of physical therapy up close. UMass Lowell students are energetic and embrace all opportunities to learn.”
Coiro has stayed involved on campus with everything from working on projects with faculty to attending student events and participating on advisory boards. He launched the Louis B. Coiro Class of ’82 Endowed Scholarship to help physical therapy students pay for college.
His most recent project is helping faculty in the Department of Physical Therapy and Kinesiology plan the opening of a new, free on-campus physical therapy clinic for students, faculty and staff. A recent small-scale test run of the clinic proved to be a success. The official launch of the clinic is in fall 2023.
“I had the privilege to assist in the pilot of the pro bono physical therapy clinic, and it went very well,” says Coiro, who advised on how to best schedule patients to maximize time and patient satisfaction. “The clinic will provide DPT students an additional opportunity to develop their clinical and critical thinking skills in a collaborative way.”
With Coiro’s help, the clinic is expected to be as successful as his practices, which he runs with his wife Jody, who is also a physical therapist.
Both of his clinics have flourished. He employs 28 staff members, including 16 therapists. The team addresses a wide range of patient needs, including orthopedic, neurological, pre- and post-surgical care, adult and pediatric care, and pelvic floor and vestibular rehabilitation.
Even with all of his business success, Coiro continues to treat a full schedule of patients.
“Treating patients and seeing them through their recovery is what I enjoy the most. The more I practice, the more I learn, and this positively impacts my patients,” says Coiro. “My degree from UML has served my patients well. From my ongoing involvement with the DPT program, I have seen that the UMass Lowell tradition of graduating DPT students who are ready to enter the workforce continues.”