Meet the Board: Professional Development Chairs

Hello everyone and HAPPY FRIDAY! We hope you had an excellent week back! Early this morning, the M1s and M2s made their way down to main campus for the College of Public Health’s 2016 Leadership Symposium, which focused on the various generations in the workplace (psst.. blog post coming soon!). The day was facilitated by a group of panelists who each shared valuable pieces of advice that we can all carry into our professional careers. To wrap up this professional & fun-filled day, we’d like to introduce our very own Professional Development Chairs, Jill Brandenburg and Samantha Lumetta! 🙂

Sam & Jill hanging out in the ADL suite!

Sam & Jill hanging out in the ADL suite!

M1 Professional Development Chair: Jill Brandenburg

1. Tell us a little about yourself!
I grew up and went to school in Columbus, Ohio where I studied exercise science. I decided that it I wanted to go to graduate school away from home and am so happy that I have ended up in Philly. In my free time (which is nonexistent), I like to be outside hiking, kayaking, and running. I love animals, I currently have a cat and a dog.

2. Why did you run for this position?
I ran for the Professional Development position because I was excited by the opportunity to represent my class and their interests. I really enjoy learning and hope to share that with everyone else by facilitating fun and new opportunities to further ourselves as students and future practitioners.

3. What do you hope to gain from this position in terms of professional development?
I hope to further develop my leadership and communication skills.

4. What is the value of working on a team?
Working on a team allows for a ton of sharing and creativity! Teams push us out of our comfort zones and open our eyes to differing views and opinions. Teamwork makes the dream work 😉

5. What does being a leader mean to you?
Being a leader means being open and receptive. It means being objective and making decisions that will benefit the whole group.

6. What areas of OT are you interested in?
Adults, pediatrics.. I really can’t pick.

7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?
The diversity of clientele – no two clients can be treated exactly the same.

8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?
It can be difficult at times but don’t lose sight of why you are here! Oh, and I recommend coffee.

M2 Professional Development Chair: Samantha Lumetta

1. Tell us a little about yourself!
Hi! I’m Sam! I’m from Long Island NY, I graduated undergrad from Hofstra and I majored in psychology. I’m learning so much at Temple and exploring Philly!

2. Why did you run for this position?
Professional development is an important part of any job and the position kept me thinking about professional development opportunities. I ran for this position because I thought it would be a great way to contribute to SOTA and learn a lot!

3. Have you learned anything in this position that you feel you will carry into your professional career?
Yes! I have learned about the importance of attending conferences, engaging in professional development opportunities and how to start a journal (reading) club! I will continue to engage in these activities in my career.

4. What is the value of working on a team?
Working with a team allows you to exchange ideas and get feedback. SOTA board and general members have been supportive and also have motivated me to participate in their events and create new events!

5. What does being a leader mean to you?
To me, a leader is a role model. A leader is responsible and addresses issues as they present themselves.

6. What areas of OT are you interested in?
I entered the program interested in pediatrics, which I still am interested in, however, after my fieldwork experiences and other job experiences I am also interested in in-patient rehab setting and home health. I am looking forward to exploring the possibilities in OT!

7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?
My favorite aspect of OT is the focus on what really matters to clients and learning more about their lives.

8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?
My advice to future students would be to get organized early and often!

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Guest Post: Better Latte than Never

Hi everyone! Welcome back and hope you all had an enjoyable and restful break! As the semester is starting to wrap up and it’s getting colder outside (on some days), it’s time to hunker down and get our studying on! Just as everyone has different learning styles, we all have our own preferences on how and where to study. Some of us are alone-in-our-rooms-with-the-door-closed studiers, others like to study in groups at the library, and of course, there are lots of other options in between. If you’re looking to study in cozier spots with background noise (and plenty of opportunities to people watch during those much needed brain breaks,) keep reading for some coffee shop ideas courtesy of second year student, Karen Sabater! She puts her OT spin on these recommendations for a fun and informative read! 🙂

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As a grad student, assignments become more intense and there are more sleepless nights (and panic attacks). Well, mainly for me because I’m kind of a procrastinator. Just as a heads up, doing homework or studying the night before doesn’t work anymore. Trust me, I know from experience. As Occupational Therapy students, we learn about sensory profiles and how the person environment fit leads to an increase of occupational performance. Some people need more sensory stimuli to meet their threshold whereas others want a lot less or else they can’t focus. We learned this from Dr. Lynch’s lectures about Winnie Dunn’s Sensory Processing Model.

With that being said, I have found the perfect mix of places to study to fit my sensory needs. Unfortunately, these coffee shop features are sort of limited because I live in center city. But for those of you who are out venturing the cafe world, I hope you enjoy my recommendations.

 

There is one coffee shop that I fell in love with that isn’t in center city– surprise, surprise! Although there are numerous La Colombe locations, the one in Fishtown is the BEST. Why? It’s huge, hipster, and harmonious. The hustle and bustle of the cafe has quite a charm to it. Plus the rustic interior is aesthetically satisfying. Oh, and the choices of drinks and coffees are quite unique. I particularly love the iced mocha with sweetened condensed milk. They also have a different mix of biscuits, pizzas, soups, and sandwiches that make going to study a little more pleasant. Everyone there has fantastic fashion sense and is either attending a business meeting or doing something else productive. This atmosphere encourages you to not go on YouTube, but to get into the work grind mood.

 

Heading back to the city, another chain that I love studying at is Saxbys–preferably the one on 11th and Locust. This one is a quick walk for me to get great coffee that is slightly less expensive than going to the typical Starbucks. Their specialty coffee list goes on and on, everything from cookies n’ cream to a campfire treat. To have amazing tasting coffee to start off your study day can only drive you to start that research paper or memorize those muscles.

 

Walking one block over to 10th St, you’ll find a more peaceful place to sit. Bodhi Coffee is a smaller cafe with hard wood furniture, giving that deep pressure input. The best part about it is that they give student discounts, which makes adult life a little bit easier. Because this place isn’t a big chain, it doesn’t get that crowded and it’s pretty relaxing for a person who doesn’t respond well to too much sensory stimuli.

 

A quick skip and a jump over to Pine St and you will discover the awesomeness of Good Karma Cafe. There’s plenty of other locations as well, but if you haven’t noticed, I am really into energy conservation so I don’t like to walk too far to get to where I need to go. Good Karma is exactly what it means–you spend some time there and in return, you’re finished with half your projects for the semester. (Disclaimer: I have not done that personally, but I’m pretty sure most people in that cafe probably do.) This place has a ton of study places with tables ranging in various sizes and they also offer outside seating surrounded by plants and flowers to get you away from the city lifestyle for a moment. Their breakfast sandwiches are my favorite and their food list has the most selection out of all the coffee places mentioned (the apple of my eye one is fantastic!!).

 

I saved Square One for last because it was the first cafe I fell in love with when I moved to the city and was still getting accustomed to the neighborhoods. Located on 13th between Locust and Spruce, it was the perfect mix of a short walk and awesome coffee. For those who need more support when sitting, this place is filled with pillows and padded seating. Although as OTs we learn about how 90-90-90 is the most optimal seating position, some of us want that comfort in order to focus on the task in front of them. I, for one, am one of those people and I can’t be uncomfortable when sitting down or else nothing will ever get done. The atmosphere has just the right amount of sensory stimuli, as Square One has music playing at a low volume and their interior design has a mix of homey and modern at the same time.

I hope you guys check out my recommendations and if you guys do, please snap some selfies and send them to Temple’s SOTA pages. If you cater towards your sensory needs, you will be well on your way to a productive day! Thank you to Christina Lam for letting me do a feature on this! And remember everyone, winter is coming. (AKA finals!)

 

Written by Karen Sabater

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Meet the Board: SOTA Social Media

Hi everyone! My name is Genna Clayman, a first year MOT student and your brand new M1 Social Media Chair. As Thanksgiving is my favorite time of the year, I thought I would use this week to introduce myself! I have never managed an official blog before, so I am super excited to continue the legacy of our SOTA blog (with a little guidance from M2 chair, Christina 🙂 ) to keep you all informed on the excitement surrounding Temple’s MOT program!

Since you’ll learn a little more about me in this week’s feature of Meet the Board, I thought I’d keep it light and tell you a few fun facts about myself, followed by a Thanksgiving-themed game of two truths and a lie!

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~FUN FACTS~

  1. My favorite ice cream combo from Cold Stone is coffee with gummy bears.
  2. I was bit while trying to rescue a baby squirrel with a broken arm… This made me realize that I would probably (hopefully) have better success working with humans as an OT.
  3. I graduated from Temple in 2015 with a B.S. in Public Health- Owls for life!
  4. I am a big fan of the Kermit the Frog memes.
  5. My favorite occupations include cooking & baking, singing and playing guitar, and swimming!

And now, a Thanksgiving-themed game of two truths and a lie

Think you know which one isn’t true? Comment below and let me know! 🙂

  1. One year I completely forgot to thaw the turkey and we didn’t eat until 9PM…
  2. I put gravy on my pumpkin pie instead of whipped cream
  3. I love my sweet potatoes WITHOUT marshmallows on top

Thanks for allowing me to introduce myself! I hope you are all enjoying this chilly Thanksgiving break. I know M1s are studying hard and M2s are busy preparing for their next big fieldwork adventure, but please remember to take some time to shut off your brains, relax, and enjoy yourselves! You can start by checking out this week’s feature of Meet the Board below!

M1 Social Media Chair: Genna Clayman

1. Tell us a little about yourself!

Hey everyone, I’m Genna! I’m 23 years old and grew up in the ‘burbs. Growing up I had no clue about what I wanted to “be,” so I bounced around from social work to public health and finally discovered my dream job of occupational therapy! As a public health graduate, I have a great respect for community. I’m really excited for all of the opportunities that we have as students and future professionals to give back to North Philadelphia. In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with friends, writing music and cuddling with my dogs (Roger-15 years, Chloe-10 months). I’ve played acoustic guitar for about 9 years and I love getting together with friends to play music!

2. Why did you run for this position?

I ran for social media chair because it’s such an incredible outlet to express yourself and to reach others. Through this position, I hope to make a series of video blogs (#vlogs) that will highlight all of the amazing aspects of Temple’s OT program.

3. Have you learned anything in this position that you feel you will carry into your professional career?

Even though I’m brand new to SOTA, adding this position to my responsibilities has caused me to refine my time management skills over the past few months. Our program is very exciting and challenging, so it’s easy for things to slip by if you let them. By taking on this responsibility, I know that I will need to stay organized and take the initiative to put out new material even when it seems like there are a million other things to do. I really enjoy social media, so this position will also allow me to take a break when things get stressful and focus on something a bit lighter!

4. What is the value of working on a team?

The ultimate value of working on a team is knowing that you are not alone. I’ve seen this value manifest already in just the few short months that my classmates and I have carried each other through group projects, study sessions, and long days in the classroom. The support system that we’ve developed and will continue to build over the next two years is unlike anything I’ve ever been a part of before, and it feels really good. As professionals, we will each go off on our own individual journeys with a valuable set of team skills, and those are such important skills to have when you are caring for a client with multiple needs.

5. What does being a leader mean to you?

I’ve always felt that being a leader is the ability to guide others through something.. whether it be a group project, a team sport, or an uncharted territory. Over the past few years, I’ve realized that “guiding” others involves so much more than just asking a group of people to follow you because you know the way. Great leaders support and listen to the ideas, concerns, questions, and doubts of the people that they are leading. When everyone’s thoughts and feelings are heard, each individual will feel valued and will be more likely to put forth their best efforts.

6. What areas of OT are you interested in?

Right now, at this moment in time…. I am most interested in acute rehabilitation with adults. However, I am more open to pediatrics now than I’ve ever been before. More specifically, children who have been through some form of trauma.

7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?

My favorite aspect of occupational therapy is that we give clients hope for recovery.

8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?

I’m going to abuse my social media chair powers and give 3 pieces of advice 😉

  1. Be open to new methods! Never group studied before? Try it- it gives you a whole new perspective.
  2. Record your lectures / find someone in class who always does. There’s a LOT of material.. it’s easy to miss something during lecture.
  3. Believe in yourself. Who got into the program? YOU did!

M2 Social Media Chair: Christina Lam

1. Tell us a little about yourself!

Hi, I’m Christina! I’m 25 years old and I was born and raised in South Philly. I went to Central High School (268!) and studied psychology and sociology at the University of Pennsylvania. I love to “collect” new experiences and random skill-sets, which is why my resume includes a bunch of odd jobs. I know how to disassemble mannequins from working as a part-time sales associate at Loft for 2 years. I can also balance a giant pizza on one hand, thanks to a summer of waitressing at an Italian restaurant on the boardwalk in Wildwood, NJ. I really enjoy widening my perspectives and take every opportunity I get to embrace culture and diversity. I would own 20 cats if I wasn’t so allergic to them. Also, I used to get yelled at a lot in college for writing wordy papers so just as a heads up, all of my answers are long…

2. Why did you run for this position?

After the general SOTA meeting last year where board positions were introduced, I had a meeting with Dr. Gargin to review some Kinesiology concepts. At the end, she asked me if I was planning to run for anything and I said secretary or social media chair. I later considered not running for anything at all, but felt weird after I had already declared 2 options to our SOTA faculty advisor. So, I just went for it.

I was drawn to the social media chair position, though, because I love blogging and I generally express myself better in writing. I was also trying to figure out my leadership style at the time and knew that I tend to take on a supportive/facilitative approach. This position felt like the overall best fit for me as I could write about SOTA members/events as well as publicly promote what the other SOTA board members were doing!

3. Have you learned anything in this position that you feel you will carry into your professional career?

While holding this position, I’ve learned the importance of collaboration and taking initiative. My role on the board has been very self-directed. This was challenging at times when I couldn’t gauge if I was being overwhelming or doing too little in terms of covering SOTA happenings. Working through these moments taught me the necessity for/power of clear communication. Everyone on the board was always so nice to me whenever I reached out to them! Also, I learned that when you take on a new role, even if you’re unsure about your responsibilities, give it 100%. As a soft-spoken and more reserved person in real life, being the social media chair sort of clashed with my personality and made me feel aggressive (and then anxious about it). However, I realized that it can be fun to be vocal and to advocate for the things that I’m passionate about. Now I feel less scared and much more equipped to speak up/hold my ground in a team setting, which I feel will help me tremendously in my professional career.

4. What is the value of working on a team?

You know when you’re playing a video game and you get those boosters that make you stronger, faster, or protected from crazy things coming at you/dying? I feel like working on a team is like having all of those awesome boosters all of the time. When everyone works as a team, they become a sort of like a collective super human. Working on a team allows for a wide range of perspectives, so many different and complementing skills, and a built-in support system. The end result is a product far superior than something 1 person would come up with alone. Moreover, the process is wonderful as you can all learn new things from each other. It’s also often more efficient and less overwhelming to work together. In terms of healthcare, this provides the best treatment for patients and truly client-centered care.

5. What does being a leader mean to you?

I used to think that being a leader meant being bossy and loud. Since I am neither of those things, I felt like I didn’t have what it takes to be a leader. However, throughout the course of this program and my time as social media chair, I’ve realized that being a leader means supporting and guiding those you are leading through an experience/task, and making sure that you’re setting them up for success. There are many different leadership styles that can all be very effective. Personally, when I’m asked to be a leader, my goals are to make sure that everyone is contributing by taking on tasks that utilize their strengths and ultimately, making sure that everyone is motivated and working together. It’s also important to establish a realistic timeline for everyone to complete what it is they need to do and helping them stay aware of it.

6. What areas of OT are you interested in?

I’m interested in so many areas of OT which is exciting but also terrifying because I want to do it all! I’ve always wanted to work with older adults and that hasn’t changed. However, I’m now also interested in working with children with Autism and the homeless population. Community-based practice has really been drawing me in, which is a nice surprise!

7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?

My favorite aspect of OT is the fact that our job is to “make it work.” When someone has something that they want to do, no matter how simple or complicated, we find ways to make it possible. Whether it’s addressing the person, the activity, or the environment, we take on the task of being creative and persistent in order to allow people to participate in life. We are also motivators and educators for patients and their families. OT’s ability to bring back function and meaning into people’s lives makes me thankful every day that I chose to go into this field!

8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?

Always remember what inspired you to get into the field of OT and the things you’ll get to do to help people once you graduate, especially during overwhelming times. Assignments will pile up and there will be times when you feel pulled in a hundred different directions, but hold on to your passion for OT and allow it to center you. You’re entering one of the most unique fields that exist—be proud and excited! And, if you can make some time, continue volunteering in OT settings to help you stay motivated throughout the program. Good luck! 🙂

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Walk to End Alzheimer’s 2016

Last Saturday, November 12, 2016, Temple OT students got together to participate in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s. After raising $906 as a team through generous donations from family and friends as well as fundraising, we were ready to walk. We joined a crowd of people that was filled with bright smiles and positive energy. Whether we knew each other or not, that morning we were all united by a common, two-fold purpose—to raise awareness for Alzheimer’s disease and to support the search for a cure. The weather was chilly but our hearts were warm. Armed with our colorful flowers to represent the different reasons why we were all walking, we marched through Citizens Bank Park hopeful for an end to this disease. For some of us, the walk was deeply personal. Christine DiChiara, 2nd year student and our team leader this year, shares her story about why she walked below.

 

M2s: Jenna Lastres, Christine DiChiara, Morgan Brockman, and Ali Richman

M2s: Jenna Lastres, Christine DiChiara, Morgan Brockman, and Ali Richman

Millions of families are affected by Alzheimer’s Disease each year. Four years ago, my family joined this statistic when my grandmother was diagnosed at the age of eighty-four. She was the most loving, courageous, free spirited woman I have ever known. And as I watched this heinous disease slowly take over her life, I decided it was time to take a stand. I first participated in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s last year because I wanted to raise money and awareness for the disease. I wanted to take any opportunity I could to ensure that other families would not have to endure what mine has.

Participating in this event has given me a glimpse at how many people are affected by this disease. At the start of the event, participants were encouraged to take a flower from the Promise Garden, where a different color flower represented how the disease has affected you. Whether you are the caregiver of a patient with Alzheimer’s, currently suffer from Alzheimer’s, lost a loved one to this disease, or were at the event to raise awareness, everyone’s voice was heard. During the opening ceremonies, participants were asked to raise their flowers in the air as one voice, unified to beat this disease. At that moment, thousands of flowers were held in the air and it was truly a breathtaking moment. To see so many people come together to support a cause to benefit the lives of others was incredibly inspiring.

The Walk to End Alzheimer’s is so important to me because it gives people, like my grandmother, a voice. It brings people together to fight for their loved ones. And more importantly, it gives people hope for the future; hope that we can overcome this disease and that someday there will be a cure. But until that day, it is crucial that we continue to raise awareness and donate to this cause.

This year, I walked to honor my grandmother’s legacy. I walked with my purple flower held high, to represent losing someone I loved to this awful disease. And I will continue to walk until we find a cure.

Written by Christine DiChiara

 

 

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The Temple OT Team!

The Temple OT Team!

(More more photos, click here or find the “Walk to End Alzheimer’s 2016” album on our Facebook page!)

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Meet the Board: SOTA Secretaries

It’s time for this week’s Meet the Board! Today we’re featuring our student association secretaries: first year student, Ali Bennet and second year student, Melissa Miller. Get to know them a little better by reading about their views on the value of being a team player as well as their favorite things about OT!

Melissa & Ali carefully choosing the best memes to include in the weekly reminders

M1 Secretary: Ali Bennett

1. Tell us a little about yourself!
My name is Ali Bennett. I am originally from Michigan but moved to Delaware in 2010. I am 25 years old. I currently love yoga! I am addicted to several TV shows: Greys Anatomy, The Walking Dead, Parks and Rec, The Office, and Friends.

Fun facts: I can solve a Rubiks cube, I was a national ranked Scottish dancer when I was 13, I used to be a preschool teacher, and I’m getting married in 2018!

2. Why did you run for this position?
I wanted to run for a position and felt that the secretary position was the most applicable to my strengths and abilities of organization and communication.

3. What do you hope to gain from this position in terms of professional development?
I hope to learn how to communicate and synthesize information better. I also hope to learn more about SOTA & AOTA events. I also want to learn how to develop better leadership skills to utilize for my future.

4. What is the value of working on a team?
The value of working on a team is the opportunity to incorporate everyones ideas and to learn from others. Collaboration is key!

5. What does being a leader mean to you?
Being a leader means being a person that is trustworthy, a good listener, and open minded. I believe that utilizing information learned from past situations (both good and bad) is incredibly helpful in becoming a leader.

6. What areas of OT are you interested in?
I am interested in peds currently, however I’m open to anything!

7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?
I love that there is so much variation in the field and that you can chose almost an area of interest and be able to work there. I also enjoy that OT has so much freedom for creativity!

8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d share with future students?
My one piece of advice is get organized early because it can be difficult to go back later and try to reorganize. PREPARE and you will succeed!

 

M2 Secretary: Melissa Miller

1. Tell us a little about yourself!
I’m 26 years old, I”m from Lancaster County, PA but currently live in Washington Square West, I worked as a TSS for 3 years before starting grad school, and I’m currently binging Parks & Rec on Netflix!

2. Why did you run for this position?
Honestly because you nominated me Christina, and I would probably do anything you tell me to haha. For real though. I wasn’t really too involved in any clubs/organizations in undergrad, and I figured if I just took the plunge and run for a position that might help me to be more involved in organizations in the program and in my professional career. I’ve always been kind of insane with organization and making lists, etc so I figured I could probably make a decent secretary!

3. Have you learned anything in this position that you feel you will carry into your professional career (M2 only)?
Yes I’ve definitely learned some skills that I will use as a future practitioner. Being able to take accurate and succinct notes, but mostly that it takes a lot of organization and collaboration to be the main communicator between the board and the general membership. So this amount of communication and collaboration will be good experience for any setting I work in, to communicate with clients, family members, supervisors, OTAs, and professionals from other disciplines. It’s all about getting every member of the team on the same page and up to date on the progress of a client, just like keeping every member of SOTA up to date with the weekly reminders!

4. What is the value of working on a team?
I think the most important part is getting exposure to new or different ideas that you might not have come up with on your own. With everyone working together, but also having their own little area of expertise, we can really run a successful organization.

5. What does being a leader mean to you?
I think being a leader is all about inspiring the people around you to work hard and accomplish great things. And it’s all about leading by example.

6. What areas of OT are you interested in?
Too many different ones… neurorehab, home care with older adults, young adults with autism…. or who knows maybe I’ll end up back in the school setting!

7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?
Probably just the simple fact that we get to help individuals get their life back. People seek out OT because they’re unable to do something they wish that they could, and we get to be creative and figure out how they can do it. Who wouldn’t love doing that every day?

8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?
Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there, to share your unique ideas, to try something new and maybe fail. Every new experience or challenge is valuable, and will help to build your character and your future professional identity. At my first OT shadowing setting before I started the program, there was an inspirational quote poster (corny right?) on the wall and I never forgot it: Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Ralph Waldo Emerson.

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Characters of the Week: Danielle and Melinda

Hi friends! Can you believe that we’re already halfway through November? There are only 3 more days until Fall Break 😀 Soon we can all temporarily stop thinking about school and shift to spending all of the quality time with our loved ones! M1s and M2s alike are looking forward to this well-deserved break. Just hang in there a little longer guys, you can do it! Remember to take those brain breaks and allow yourself to relax a little. Conveniently, here is a great opportunity to do that! Our characters of the week this week are Dani and Melinda. Keep reading to learn more about them (such as why they’d both pick the ability to fly over the ability to breathe underwater)!

 

M1

M1

Name: Danielle (Dani) Guernsey
Hometown: Chester Springs
Favorite actor/actress: Julia Roberts
Favorite season: Fall
Favorite class so far: Kinesiology
Favorite occupation: Horse-riding
The population (s) I’d like to work with: Undecided between orthopedic, mental health, geriatric and kids
Something that inspires me: When people persevere despite the odds.
The ability to fly or breathe underwater: Fly-my wings would be huge and multi-color!
3 places I’d like to visit some day: Italy, Brazil, & Spain.
Something I can do now that I thought I would never be able to: Name the muscles of the upper extremity from the shoulder to the hand.

 

M2

M2

Name: Melinda Sloyer
Hometown: Coopersburg, PA
Favorite actor/actress: hm…that’s a tough one. Right now I would have to say either Leslie Jones or Kate McKinnon because I’m on an SNL kick.
Favorite season: SUMMER!!!
Favorite class so far: Orthotics or Development
Favorite occupation: I love watching TV shows. I watch way too many shows to even list, but I get behind and end up binge watching them on the weekends or when we don’t have school work to do.
The population (s) I’d like to work with: I don’t really have a preference yet. I like everything I try so far. Hopefully fieldwork helps me narrow it down.
Something that inspires me: Pinterest! I could spend hours on there looking at crafts or decorating ideas or recipes.
The ability to fly or breathe underwater: Fly because I hate sitting in traffic.
3 places I’d like to visit some day: I would love to go to Costa Rica some day (we even considered getting married there because it looks awesome), I would also like to go to Fiji and see the awesome beaches, last place I would pick would probably be Italy because I love food and would love to take a food tour of Italy.
Something I can do now that I thought I would never be able to: Drive in the city.

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Meet the Board: SOTA Presidents

TGIF, the weekend is almost here! Before you rush off to do fun things, we have something fun for you, too– this week’s Meet the Board! In this edition, we’re featuring our student association presidents: first year student, Sarah Forsyth and second year student, Caroline Cameron. Keep reading to learn why they ran for this position, what leadership means to them, and why today is a special day! 🙂 

The creative duo!

The creative duo!

M1 President: Sarah Forsyth

1. Tell us a little about yourself!
I’m half Chinese and half Scott-Irish. My younger brother is married to my best friend – both are living in Germany, where my brother is stationed as an Army engineer. I have an adorable 3-year-old German Shepherd I share with my boyfriend (you are welcome to come visit her any time you like!). No, I do not style my eyebrows so they stick up. They are identical cowlicks that I inherited from my maternal grandfather.

2. Why did you run for this position?
Honestly, I didn’t consider running for SOTA president until a few different classmates told me they thought I would be a good fit for the position. I absolutely love organizing, collaborating with a team and delegating tasks to individuals who have the skills to match. The SOTA board I will be serving with is filled with independent, strong women who are all so talented; I am very fortunate to be part of an awesome team.

3. What do you hope to gain from this position in terms of professional development?
I hope to continue my ability to listen. I like to talk a lot. 🙂

4. What is the value of working on a team?
Besides being a brainstorming machine, working with a team can give you tons of energy. I like to motivate others but there are times when I need a boost of energy and I think this incoming SOTA board has a lot of dynamic personalities.

5. What does being a leader mean to you?
Being a leader means collaborating with those around me – listening to different ideas, figuring out which ones work the best and then taking action. It also means seeing the potential in others so that I can delegate tasks that allow others to truly shine and show off their skills.

6. What areas of OT are you interested in?
NICU, hand therapy, burn unit and (hopefully one day) being a professor

7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?
The variety of fields you can explore! And that OT continues to grow and adapt to areas of life no one thought was possible. I love that I will be in a career that I am passionate about for the rest of my life while continuing to explore and grow.

8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?
Don’t sweat the small stuff. That low B you received on an exam? That presentation you may have mumbled your way through? That group project you struggled with? It’s all a fraction of becoming an OT. Keep your eye on the prize.

 

M2 President: Caroline Cameron

1. Tell us a little about yourself!
Hi! My name is Caroline. I am from Allentown, PA. I am a twin in a family of 5 and have a chocolate lab named Jake. I went to the University of Delaware and have a B.S. in Human Services. I turn 24 on the 11th of November. I love country concerts, painting, and eating Mexican food.

2. Why did you run for this position?
When I got into the program, I knew that I wanted to be involved on campus in some way but I wasn’t sure how. As I learned about this position, it seemed to fit my personality well and a couple classmates encouraged me to run.

3. Have you learned anything in this position that you feel you will carry into your professional career?
This position has definitely taught me to be flexible and to keep a planner handy! Things are constantly popping up and being open to change is so important for not only this position but also my OT career. I have also learned how to manage a team of people in order to meet group goals.

4. What is the value of working on a team?
A team allows you to do things that are impossible to do on your own. It gives you a support system and people to share your struggles and success with. A team can inspire creative thinking and novel solutions.

5. What does being a leader mean to you?
Being a leader means putting the good of the team first. It means extending a hand when someone needs help but it also mean asking for help and relying on your group because you can’t do everything on your own. It about leading by example and supporting others to reach their potential.

6. What areas of OT are you interested in?
Right now, I am very interested in neurological disorders. After graduation, I think I want to work in an acute rehab in Philly but that could all change. A lot excites me and I am learning more everyday so I am open to any and all new opportunities.

7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?
The diversity! I love taking on new challenges and learning new things. There are SO many different settings and populations within OT and I hope to work in a variety of places over my career.

8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?
Immerse yourself, ask questions, take control of your learning; you are responsible for the amazing professional you will become! (cheesy but true)

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Characters of the Week: Maggie & Grace

Hello everyone! Today is a very important day in history– aside the fact that SEPTA is back and running, it’s election day! No matter who you’re voting for, it’s imperative that you go out there and exercise your right to vote! As OT students, we know the importance of recognizing life skills and opportunities that are often taken for granted. Let’s take the time today to think about how voting is both an honor and a privilege! While we anxiously wait for the election results, here are the character of the week. This week, we have Maggie Folkes and Grace Chung who shared some fun facts with us!

 

M1

Name: Maggie Folkes
Hometown: Lansdale, PA
Favorite decade: The 70’s! I love the music and style from that time period. 
Favorite ice cream flavor: Cookies & Cream- perfect mix of creamy and crunch. 
Favorite class so far: I think I would say Development. I think material is interesting and it is cool to see how children’s skills progress into adulthood. I didn’t realize the young age we learn so many skills!
Favorite occupation: …going to Marshalls’s
The population (s) I’d like to work with: I’m not sure yet! I have an interest in working with individuals in the Mental Health population, but I’m open to anything. There is so much to learn and explore. 
The item I splurged on: I splurge on everything clothes related. #treatyoself
Cookies or chips: Ranch Doritos for sure. I could eat a whole bag, easy. 
If I could only listen to 3 songs for the rest of my life, I’d listen to: Landslide by Stevie Nicks, Sweet Baby James by James Taylor and Into the Mystic by Van Morrison 
Something I often do to comfort others: Bake cookies for others.. mostly because I can’t eat sweets, but I love watching other people enjoy them!

 

M2

Name: Grace Chung
Hometown: Springfield, VA
Favorite decade: the 90’s!
Favorite ice cream flavor: ROCKY ROAD!
Favorite class so far: Orthotics
Favorite occupation: Self-feeding. Sometimes it may be a little too frequent and in ridiculous amounts, but I’m sure I’m not the only one guilty of this.
The population (s) I’d like to work with: Adults and older adults
The item I splurged on: Snacks while grocery shopping. I’m pretty sure it has to do with the fact that I’m in grad school.
Cookies or chips: Cookies
If I could only listen to 3 songs for the rest of my life, I’d listen to: This is hands down the hardest question I’ve had to answer since my phone interview with Dr. Ideishi. I’ll limit this question to my favorite artist…Beyonce. Crazy in Love, Sorry, and Halo.
Something I often do to comfort others: Listen and offer ice cream 🙂

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Meet the Board: SOTA Vice Presidents

Hello friends! It’s day 3 of the SEPTA strike and our students seem to be holding on strong. At least the weather is nice and the weekend is near! If you’ve successfully navigated our congested city today, congratulations! Treat yourself to a latte (or whatever alternative you’d like) and keep reading this post. It’s a double dose of Meet the Board this week and the spotlights are now on our student association vice presidents: 1st year student, Rachel Frick and 2nd year student, Jacqueline Jefferson!

Rachel giving Jackie a piggyback ride! They wanted to clarify that they always come to class dressed like this.

Rachel giving Jackie a piggyback ride! They wanted to clarify that they always come to class dressed like this.

M1 Vice President: Rachel Frick

1. Tell us a little about yourself!
Just a southern girl from Charlotte, NC who loves sushi, dogs and hanging out with my friends and family!

2. Why did you run for this position? I ran for VP because I wanted to get involved in SOTA and I wanted to represent the class. As VP, I am in a position where I can work with all of the SOTA board members as well as SOTA members to ensure that everyone’s voice is being heard and that their opinions are valued.

3. What do you hope to gain from this position in terms of professional development?
I hope to gain more leadership experience and learn more about occupational therapy from a new lens. I hope to network with other OT students and professionals to learn more about the profession.

4. What is the value of working on a team?
Working on a team fosters creativity and learning. It allows you to build on your own ideas and work with others for a greater common goal. As a team we can accomplish so much more than just as a single member.

5. What does being a leader mean to you?
Being a leader means that you are committed, honest, a problem solver, positive, and an effective communicator! To me, it is such an honor to represent such an amazing group of individuals.

6. What areas of OT are you interested in?
I am not sure what area of OT I am interested in yet! I am keeping an open mind and am excited to see what area I fall in to!

7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?
My favorite aspect of the OT field is that it is so versatile. I love that this profession allows you to reach any population and any setting. I also love that it is person-centered and focuses on the needs of the individual to get them back to the occupations that they love!

8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?
My one piece of advice for future students is to keep an open mind and don’t limit yourself! A lot of students come into school thinking they know what population they want to work with. It is important to keep an open mind as you learn about all of the different settings that OT’s can work in. You may end up loving a setting that you never thought you would like!

 

M2 Vice President: Jacqueline Jefferson

1. Tell us a little about yourself!
My name is Jacqueline Jefferson, I am 25 years old and I am from Newtown PA. I graduated from Temple University with a Bachelor’s degree in Public Health. In my free time when I am not in school, I love to be with my fiancé Dan, my family (including my dogs Max and Mia and cat Zoey) and my friends. I love to be outside and go hiking. My absolute favorite place to be is down the shore at Long Beach Island!

2. Why did you run for this position?
I wanted to be Vice President of SOTA because I wanted to be more involved. Within this position you have very many different roles and one of my strongest strengths is the ability to multitask so, I felt this position would be a good fit to my skill set.

3. Have you learned anything in this position that you feel you will carry into your professional career?
Being a member of SOTA taught me to not only be a leader but, to also be a good communicator. I think one of the most important aspects of being a good leader is to have the ability to have open communication. This is something that I will carry into my professional career. As future occupational therapists having the ability to have open communication is key because we will need to collaborate with our clients and their families and also other health care professionals.

4. What is the value of working on a team?
I think one major value of working on a team is the ability to bounce ideas off one another. Everyone interprets situations differently and sometimes it helps to have the input and advice of others. I also think working on a team gives one more confidence because it allows for more support and guidance.

5. What does being a leader mean to you?
In occupational therapy a good leader is someone who is a motivator and having the ability to understand what drives people. I also think being a leader is to be selfless, the willingness to lend a helping hand and having the ability to see a problem and be apart of the solution.

6. What areas of OT are you interested in?
I am interested in a few different areas of OT. I love the geriatric population and caregiver training, I also enjoy hand therapy I like that it is very personable. I also enjoy the challenge of rehabilitation care for people with neurologic conditions.

7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?
One of my favorite aspects of the OT field is the ability to work in a variety of settings, which allows me to challenge myself and express my creativity.

8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?
One piece of advice I would give to future students is to be open minded to every experience you are given especially in fieldwork. There is always something positive or useful that can come out of any situation.

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Meet the Board: SOTA Community Service Chairs

Hi everyone! Hope you were all able to get around the city okay with the SEPTA strike today. (Fingers crossed that things will be back to normal soon.) In the mean time, here is the second edition of Meet the Board! In this post, you’ll find some thoughtful responses from our student association community service chairs: 1st year student, Rachel Adler and 2nd year student, Brian Smart!

Brian & Rachel "Maybe we should try to look like we actually like each other."

Brian & Rachel
“Maybe we should try to look like we actually like each other.”

 

M1 Community Service Chair: Rachel Adler

1. Tell us a little about yourself!
I grew up in northern New Jersey and later moved to Minnesota for college. I’ve lived in Philadelphia for almost 3 years, and absolutely love it here! My favorite neighborhood is West Philly (“Best Philly”)!
2. Why did you run for this position?
I ran for this position because community is so important to me. In fact, I was really drawn to Temple’s OT program because of their emphasis on community involvement. Community experiences are built into the curriculum, but I think there’s so much more we can do to give back to the Philadelphia community that’s supporting us through our graduate school experience. Community service is also a great way to get involved in areas outside of the health care setting, like cultural arts or parks and recreation programs, and bring the OT perspective to those experiences as a way to advocate for our career and the multitude of services we provide.
3. What do you hope to gain from this position in terms of professional development?
I’m excited about this opportunity to organize and plan meaningful experiences for my fellow OT students. Most importantly, I hope to build relationships with members of the community that will shape my professional experiences in the future.
4. What is the value of working on a team?
Working on a team means bringing together ideas and perspectives that wouldn’t otherwise come together. It’s motivation to learn, evolve, and create change.
5. What does being a leader mean to you?
Being a leader to me means first finding something that you’re passionate about and want to pursue. My first leadership position was in college planning movie events for my school’s program board, mostly because I loved movies and was eager to share my love of film with others. The problem was, I was shy and unsure of myself, so applying for a leadership position was a scary thought. I had to set aside all of the insecurities and inner monologue telling me, “I can’t” and replace it with “I can and I will.” It’s easy to be a leader once you step up and remind yourself that just because you’re a “leader,” you’re not alone. I had a board of people supporting me, just like I do now on the SOTA Board.
6. What areas of OT are you interested in?
I came into the program set on working in pediatrics because most of my experience has been with children. The job that inspired me to become an OT was at a day treatment program for children on the autism spectrum. Since starting school though, I’m more open to idea of working with adults and older adults in different settings.
7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?
I was drawn to OT because it uses creative strategies to treat clients. I have a background in studio art, and really like the idea of bringing art making into practice as a way of both meeting clients’ interests and working on functional life skills.
8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?
Come into your OT education with an open mind. You might have an idea of what you’d like to do with your OT career when you apply to school, but know that it will likely change. I have learned so much new information about the field of OT in the last semester and a half that I hadn’t thought about a year ago. This is not meant in a negative way, but as a positive reminder that the field of OT is broad and ever changing- the possibilities are endless!

 

M2 Community Service Chair: Brian Smart

1. Tell us a little about yourself!
I’m from Williamstown, New Jersey. I went to Stockton University for my undergrad and I studied Psychology there. I grew up playing a lot of sports and still play on a baseball team. I love to skateboard and snowboard, and I go to Colorado every year to snowboard. I play the drums and played in a band through high school. Since it is harder these days to get together with a band and write songs, I have been teaching myself how to use music production software over the years and have made a few songs just for fun with my friend Alex. I’m a big stand up comedy fan and listen to a lot of comedy podcasts. I’m also a bit of a gamer (mostly horror games).
2. Why did you run for this position?
I chose OT because I wanted a career where I could directly help people. I saw this position as another great way to do that very thing. I have always wished that I was more involved in community service in undergrad and I knew this position would be a great way to not only get involved, but to establish connections to stay involved over the years.
3. Have you learned anything in this position that you feel you will carry into your professional career?
I have definitely learned a lot that I will take with me. Being on the board has challenged me to be a lot more organized and timely. I still have a long way to go, but the board has definitely helped with in those areas. I have also learned how to reach out and establish professional relationships with people.
4. What is the value of working on a team?
You get to hear the unique perspectives of each person from the team and learn from that. You can take a step back from your own viewpoints and apply others that you may have never thought of if you were not working on a team.
5. What does being a leader mean to you?
I think leadership involves recognizing the strengths of not only yourself, but of those around you, and being able to utilize and highlight those strengths at times that benefit all of those involved.
6. What areas of OT are you interested in?
As some of you may know, I have shown an interest in working as an OT in prisons and with prisoners as they are being released. I think a lot of prisoners lose touch with some of their healthier occupations when they are incarcerated, which leads to them becoming repeat offenders when they are released. I think the system sets them up to fail and working with them to develop new skills and create more opportunities for them to engage in healthier occupations could have a huge impact on their likelihood to repeat a crime.
7. What is your favorite aspect of the OT field?
The ability to be creative in a way that not only benefits the client, but also makes intervention more meaningful to them.
8. Can you share 1 piece of advice you’d like to give to future students?
Lean on your classmates when you need help and be there for them when they need help. Grad school is difficult and very trying at times. You all are in it together and, in my opinion, the best way to be successful in school is to stick together and support each other. As much as I believe in my own abilities, I know that having such an awesome group of people in my class has been immensely helpful in reaching the point I am at.

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