Faculty / Staff Resources Student Resources
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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Why I Chose OT


September 7, 2012

What are OS/OT?

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I started out on the pre-med track like many others, but I quickly realized that it wasn’t for me. I didn’t enjoy the courses and felt that my classmates were too competitive. I flipped through the USC Catalogue and considered all the majors USC offers. Being that I have many interests, I could only narrow the list of possible majors down to ten majors. I needed advice from someone whom I could trust, so I turned to my pediatrician of twenty years about what careers I should look into. I told him I wanted to be in a helping profession with the lowest stress possible. He suggested I look into occupational therapy (OT) since his wife is an OT (USC graduate, too!). From then on, I joined the Pre-OT Club at school, saw an OT advisor, and even visited the first and most prestigious OT school in Thailand while on vacation (I should add that the person who greeted me got her Doctorate in Occupational Therapy at USC). The more I looked into OT, the more I got into it.

I felt OT was a perfect fit for me because I get bored easily. In OT I know that I am encouraged to use creativity with clients and tailor to their own needs and wants. Each client that I work with will have different stories to tell and come from various backgrounds. As an OT, I will be able to do storymaking with them. I can empower clients to write their own chapters of life filled with meaningful activities of their own choosing. Through my fieldwork experiences, I have worked with newborns in the hospitals to the elderly in a community-based setting. One day I hope to own my own clinic or day program with a built-in yoga studio, so that caregivers can do yoga while waiting for their loved ones getting OT.

1. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | March 30, 2013

Hey Alisa!

My name is Annie, and I’m a junior in high school from Michigan—the year when it’s just stress all around. Haha. Well I was just hoping if you could answer some questions for me…you know the usual clueless high school questions. I hope you don’t mind!

I’m really interested in the OT field and I was wondering if USC has a pre-OT program for undergrads? If there isn’t, would it be possible if I went to USC for undergrad and then applied for the OT program for grad school? Or would the chances be lower to get in if I did that? Could you also describe to me what the USC campus is like and maybe why you chose to go there in the end?

Annie 😊

2. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | April 3, 2013

Hi Annie!

Thanks for you interest in the program! I went through undergrad at USC as an OT major and am staying a fifth year to get my Master’s! You could apply as an incoming freshman for the Bachelor’s to Master’s program or apply as a sophomore to be in the OT major and stay an extra year after the Bachelor’s to get the Master’s in OT. I encourage you to check out the different programs that we have here: http://ot.usc.edu/admissions/how-to-apply/bs-to-ma. If you don’t get in the first time, you could always apply again for the graduate 2-year program. Hope that helps!

I’ve been on the campus for almost 5 years now, and I absolutely love it! It is incredible to have so many exciting things happening all at the same time. Yesterday, I went to the quad area to hear the band play during lunch time and attended a concert on campus in the evening. There’s always so much to do in such a short period of time. Please feel free to schedule a visit! 😊