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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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Student Blog


End of the MA program ⟩
June 2, 2011, by Pierre

Much has been accomplished these past few months . . . research, papers, tests, comprehensive exams, celebrations, graduation, and now, my last fieldwork internship. I can honestly say, these 2 years in the MA program have flown by so fast and I’ve become the better for it. There was much pressure, lack of sleep, deadlines to meet, relationships to uphold, and future plans to be made . . . and, I’m still alive. My educational experience here at USC has really proved to be valuable. I find myself really applying everything I’ve learned in my treatment sessions, attempting to ‘grow’ my clinical reasoning skills, and above all, advocating for our profession in my practice area.

I always heard of USC being the leader in Occupational Therapy and Occupational Science, but I didn’t realize how well they equip you to become an emerging leader as well. I am very happy to have come out of this program feeling that I can take on any challenge posed before me in the various clinical settings.

So, what else lies before me? The OTD.

Fight on USC OT!


Life and the meaning it holds ⟩
January 31, 2011, by Pierre

What are OS/OT?

Everyday we go through our daily routines. Some of us wake up, take a shower, get dressed, eat breakfast, and go to work. For others they may be getting ready for school, volunteering, homemaking, or sleeping in. We take for granted the many objects we use due to the consistent routines and habits we have.

For some, a walking cane can mean dependence on others or independence and empowerment. What about a car? This object could mean either losing out on going to a party or getting to a job site. Sometimes a pet can unintentionally influence our ability to go outside and take a walk. How we dress can impact our self image and social life. What we construct or accomplish with our hands can build one’s self confidence. Being able to use a stove to cook a healthy meal for your family can impact ones health and wellness.

All these objects are instrumental things that can help us accomplish our daily activities and occupations. We sometimes don’t realize how important they can be and how meaningful they are until we have lost the ability to access or use them. OTs take into account the many unique aspects of occupation and find the meaningful instruments within our routines to live satisfying lives with whatever situation one is in. It’s important to see the uniqueness of each person’s occupation and identify those things that have and instrumental influence on them.


Fall semester is done! ⟩
December 14, 2010, by Pierre

It truly has been a great experience here at USC. I can just remember the first summer semester like it was yesterday . . . and now, I have 1 more semester to go and 1 more fieldwork to experience and then almost done! Can’t say I’m looking forward to comprehensive exams at next year or studying for the NBCOT exam, but I’m happy to have gone to USC for my education. They say all education is the same — in the end you get the same degree, but with the debt is the main difference.

It’s true, that USC didn’t have the lowest tuition among the schools I was applying to last year, but I can say that all the classes, the teacher interaction, the scholarships available, the resources abounding, the OT history among our hallways, the career positioning within the city, the diverse/international fieldwork affiliations, the networks you create, the USC name behind the degree, and the overall supportive culture among the students and faculty are beyond tuition costs. It’s one thing to base an education on financial costs vs quality of education . . . USC puts student learning first and really seeks to prepare us for the real world of OT.


Occupational Justice ⟩
November 9, 2010, by Pierre

Diversity What are OS/OT?

What is occupational justice? Is it like social justice? Kind of. Social justice may look at making opportunity equal to all to reduce differences; occupational justice looks at the unique differences of individuals and groups and how to help them access opportunities as they relate to occupations. It’s interesting to be learning more about how occupational therapy goes beyond the clinics and pervades our society, our culture, politics, and so on. OT in Occupational Justice attempts to meet the unique needs of the individual in order to access the opportunity of health through occupation.

Do you have a passion to help others and to help them access their natural need and desire to ‘do’ activities, to live life, and to be a part of our society? Occupational therapy is a field that is present in many different areas — this is a sign of OT’s strength. Our profession pervades so many aspects and it’s due to the great importance that people need and want to do occupations-activities-life. We seek to help others improve and access a quality of life that is rightfully theirs within a diverse culture such as ours.


OTAC Conference this year ⟩
October 18, 2010, by Pierre

Getting Involved

This year was a great year to go! I was able to last Friday and attend 2 interesting seminars. 1 — Constraint induced therapy (facilitating use of a persons affected side and limiting the opportunities of the unaffected side) and 2 — Zones of regulation (assisting children/adolescents in recognizing the patterns of their behaviors, the triggers, and how to respond with the expected social behavior).

Lots of free goodies, lots of vendors, and a lot of members! It’s great to hear that our state association membership is growing and that our profession is slowly becoming more recognized within the public arena. With so much opportunity in every area of our society and workplace, I can’t wait to graduate and start working. Where am I interested in working? Pediatrics. I will post some blogs to give updates on my part-time fieldwork!

Until then, fight on USC OT!

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