She’s never played a minute of professional basketball, but the Los Angeles Lakers refer to Judy Seto as their “secret weapon.” This summer, the Lakers’ celebrated head physical therapist shared her career advice with students in Mount St. Mary’s Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program.
For more than 20 years – and five NBA titles – Seto, BS, MPT, DPT, has worked with the Lakers to prevent and rehabilitate player injuries. Lakers star Kobe Bryant has called the difference that Seto makes for his team “enormous.”
At the Mount, she shared what she believes has been the key to her professional success. It’s a belief that she has also shared in interviews with outlets such as NBA.com, and it’s why she advocates for continuing education in her field. “It’s not the initials [in your degree] that makes someone more knowledgeable," Seto says, “but constantly trying to improve your knowledge base is crucial."
Her career connection with the Lakers began while Seto was a physical therapist at L.A.'s renowned Kerlan-Jobe Orthopedic Clinic, and has continued since she moved to Select Physical Therapy. In 2011, the Lakers convinced Seto to come aboard full-time.
Her visit to the Mount’s Doheny Campus was made possible thanks to Jared Cato ’16, a second-year student in the Mount’s DPT program. Cato served as Seto’s physical therapy aide at Select Physical Therapy, and became one of her mentees.
“This was a great opportunity that Jared facilitated for the entire program,” says Deborah Lowe, PhD, director and chair of physical therapy at Mount St. Mary’s. “It was an eye-opening and inspirational discussion.”