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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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Latino College Expo


November 15, 2018
by Serena

Admissions Diversity

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What a great turn out at this year’s 5th Annual Latino College Expo™!

What is the Latino College Expo?
Mostly comprised of high school and middle school Latino students, the event had recruiters from higher education (like me) and positive post-secondary pursuits (like recruiters from Disney Animation). The event had resources on grants, loans, and the Dream Act; additionally, information on internships and career opportunities were given. 

What did I do at the event?
While raising awareness about USC’s OT program with Diego Lopez, an occupational therapy doctorate (OTD) student, we spoke to over 300 high school students and even middle school students, (yes 8th graders :0) about OT. I wish I would have known about OT when I was in 8th grade! It was such an incredible sight to see so many young students not knowing what OT was but then realizing that their unique interests could be found in OT. For example, there were students interested in design and mechanical engineering and they realized that they could become an OT focusing on helping individuals live a more meaningful life by designing more functional prosthetics. Other students with a desire to pursue a major in criminology came to learn about OT’s role in forensic mental health and OT’s ability to work in the criminal justice system.

Given the age of the crowd, the middle and high schoolers were mostly interested in USC’s accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s in Occupational Therapy program. They were amazed and thrilled to learn that they could receive their Master’s in just 5 years and their doctorate in occupational therapy in just one subsequent year!

OTD student, Diego Lopez, and I educating high school and middle school students about USC occupational therapy programs at the 5th Annual Latino College Expo event in Pomona, California.

The highlight of the event!
One of the highlights of the event is when the host of the event came up to the USC Occupational Therapy booth and let me have the microphone! I was in utter disbelief. My face completely lit up! I was so surprised since I was the only booth she had given the ability to speak on the microphone in front of the ENTIRE crowd! You know I took full advantage of the opportunity! I politely yet firmly grabbed the microphone and proudly stated my OT elevator pitch with a huge smile on my face. I mean, the opportunity to spread awareness about the best profession in the world 😉 to over 600 people does not happen that often.

In the Future . . .
I am most definitely looking forward to attending the 6th Annual Latino College Expo next year. Maybe next time they will let me go on the main stage with the microphone!

20th Annual Black College Expo
Stay tuned for a post about the 20th Annual Black College Expo, which will take place at the LA Convention Center on February 2nd. If you are a current USC OT student or alumni of the program, please message me if you would like to attend the event and help raise awareness about USC’s OT program!