A great way to start the year
One of my favorite parts about attending the program here at USC is the tremendous diversity that can be found amongst the 100-something people in each class. From dancers and gourmet chefs to artist and musicians, each of us possess some unique background unrelated to occupational therapy that we can bring to the profession and each other.
This past weekend was a perfect example. Over the summer, I had the opportunity to be a Classroom Assistant for the incoming first-years in both Kinesiology and Neuroscience. Donna was a student in my Neuroscience lab, who I could tell had a lot of creativity and ideas floating around in her head. She invited me to a special event she was having at her house last Saturday. She wanted to build a ramp that would help one of her classmates who rides in an electric wheelchair get up the two cement steps on her front porch. That way, if they wanted to hang out or have a study group, there would be no accessibility issues.
Donna recruited over a dozen of her classmates to help and it turned into one of the highlights of my summer. With a background in art, carpentry and design, Donna was able to facilitate the whole affair, teaching everyone tool safety as well as the practical aspects of creating a ramp. People that had never used a drill or saw were cutting wood, snapping chalk lines, and laying screws along a straight edge. It was a beautiful sight.
Everyone brought food and we feasted all afternoon. Then, after successfully testing the ramp and decorating it in Trojan colors, we were all able to finally go inside for ice cream. At the end, we had a jam session with a few of the many instruments Donna has collected over her years as a musician. I left with a feeling of fullness from a job well done (or maybe it was the massive amounts of potstickers, watermelon, and brownies I ate!) and people well met that I’ve experienced more as an OT student than I have in a lifetime. These are the moments that make our program, and the people in it, so special.
Wonderful article, Rob! Yes, it was a great day!
Awesome blog, Rob! So great meeting you today on my campus tour. The program just seems so interactive and inspiring. Keep up the great work, and I hope I can be a part of the Trojan Family and OT Program in the future!