University of Southern California
University of Southern California
Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
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Student Blog | Bethany


The Roads That Lead to Rome

, by Bethany · email · comment

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There is one downside to being an undergraduate OT. I mentioned in a previous post that when I talk about Majoring in Occupational Therapy, I get the reaction: “Oooh, what is Occupational Therapy?” So I had to quickly adapt to giving my fifteen-second pitch about what OT is and how I found it. Sharing about OT is definitely not the downside. Neither is being part of this incredible program (I am often reminded of how lucky I am to have known so early on in life what I want to do in the future). The downside is that the only other people who seemed to know what OT was, were on the same road I was on: We were all passionate about helping others, all had discovered OT early on in life, and all were part of the same program. The downside is that as an undergraduate OT, I was only aware of one way to get to OT.

But this summer, as a Student Ambassador, I had a chance to recognize that all and any roads truly do lead to Rome. Through tours, information sessions, and even meeting the incoming Entry-Level Master’s class, I have been able to see the diversity of those who stumble upon OT, not just in ethnicity and age, but also in interests and walks of life. For example, in our incoming Master’s class, there are people with degrees in Biology, Kinesiology, Psychology, and other health sciences (Majors that would be helpful for completing some of our prerequisite coursework while also highlighting the student’s passions). But then we have others who pursued other interests during their undergraduate study, perhaps the French language, Economics, or even Dance. And somehow they ended up all in the same OT Master’s program at the same time. In our information sessions, there are people who simply went to different college but have always been interested in OT, some who found OT during undergraduate study, and even those who are coming to OT as a second career after seeing OT in the second-grade classroom where they taught for the past few years.

My own Bachelor’s to Master’s class is diverse in and of itself. We have our own stories for how we each found OT, whether it was shadowing a practice or perhaps watching a loved one grow through OT, and we have the honor to be part of an incredible program that allows us to engage in our specific passion for OT, even through our undergraduate years. But our paths to OT were quite direct, and it is amazing to listen to the stories about others’ journeys to where they are today. After all, it is said that more often than not, the journey matters more than the destination.

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