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University of Southern California
University of Southern California
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
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News and Events
News and Events

USC Chan, Momentum PTN to introduce faculty practice model at sensory integration clinics
August 11, 2021

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(Courtesy of Momentum PTN)

The USC Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy (USC Chan) has entered into a formal agreement to implement a faculty practice model at Momentum Pediatric Therapy Network (Momentum PTN). This unique partnership ensures that Momentum PTN grows as a respected center of clinical excellence by leveraging the expertise and knowledge mobilization capabilities of USC Chan faculty members.

The faculty practice model provides mutual benefits for USC Chan’s academic programs as well as Momentum’s clinical and community sites of service. This strategic initiative between USC Chan, ranked the nation’s No. 1 occupational therapy educational program by US News & World Report, and Momentum Pediatric Therapy Network honors the legacy of A. Jean Ayres ’45, MA ’54, a two-time USC alumna and former faculty member.

“PTN was founded nearly 25 years ago as a nonprofit organization by four occupational therapists, all of whom trained and were research assistants to Dr. Ayres,” said Terri Nishimura MA ’85, former CEO and current senior advisor of Momentum. “PTN was created to carry on the scholarly and innovative work of Dr. Ayres through high quality, innovative programs based on the foundation of sensory integration, clinical training and education and research. Momentum’s commitment to continuing this legacy through the USC Chan faculty practice model will ensure that our mission continues. The faculty practice model will support all our therapists and our programs.” 

Katie Jordan MA ’03, OTD ’04, associate chair of clinical occupational therapy services and clinical professor at USC Chan, will be leading the needs assessment, in collaboration with Momentum PTN, and will begin the recruitment efforts for two key positions:

  1. Senior Director of Professional Development and Clinical Research Coordination
    This USC Chan faculty member will be onsite full-time at Momentum PTN, and will work closely with all three professional disciplines and program staff.  Activities will include professional development; mentorship; ensuring all program staff have a solid foundation in sensory integration theory and practice; supporting innovative evidence-based interventions in pediatrics; coordination of in-services and trainings; program development; development of quality management systems; and facilitating collaboration between researchers and clinicians.
  2. Clinical Practice Faculty
    Up to seven Momentum PTN occupational therapists will have an opportunity to pursue this joint position at USC Chan as an Instructor of Clinical Occupational Therapy. These faculty members will be full-time onsite at Momentum PTN, and will be supervised by the Senior Director of Professional Development and Clinical Research Coordination, with a dotted-line report to Momentum’s leadership. Proposed activities include: 85% direct client care; 5% scholarship; research and innovation; 5% student-centered activities; and 5% general professional service. These faculty positions will be filled after the Senior Director is in place, which is anticipated by Fall 2021.

“Our partnership with Momentum PTN opens the next era of the Ayres legacy in excellence and innovation — a legacy that has been intertwined with USC for generations,” said Grace Baranek, associate dean and chair of the USC Chan Division. “Our faculty experts will be able to expand world-class services for Southern California clients and their families, and continue to mobilize sensory integration knowledge and best practices to occupational therapists, researchers, students and other stakeholders across the nation and world.”

Momentum PTN is an early child development and therapy center, providing services for children with special needs and for those at risk for developmental issues. The non-profit organization, formerly known as Pediatric Therapy Network, has clinics located in Torrance, Calif., and Long Beach, Calif., and is now a service line of Momentum Innovative Disability Services (formerly known as United Cerebral Palsy of Los Angeles).