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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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School/Life Balance

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Clipper Nation ⟩
January 31, 2012, by Kimberly

Living in LA School/Life Balance

One perk of living in downtown LA (if you are a sports fan) is access to Staples Center. The arena is literally 7 blocks from my apartment and still it has taken me 2 years to make it down there. Last night I was able to attend the Clippers / Oklahoma City Thunder game and it was awesome! I love sports; learning them, watching them, playing them, but I don’t really have a team that I am 100% loyal to. Thus it is fun when I go with others who are really into their team . . . and you could definitely say this about Clipper Nation. The energy of the fans at Staples Center was contagious! Plus the game itself last night helped a bit too as the Clippers held a continuous tight lead on OKC Thunder, Blake Griffin made an amazing dunk, literally jaw dropping to watch, and the clippers left at the half with a 12-0 run solely on 3-pointers. It was phenomenal! Even If I am not a life-long Clippers fan, I became one for the night. The other highlight for me was seeing the devotion of one particular fan, “Clipper Darrell.” From starting arena-wide chants to dancing in the aisle along with Clipper Spirit Dance Team to wearing a fully decked out blue and red 3-piece suit, he epitomized the intensity of these fans’ loyalty. The whole experience was a great break from school and a refreshing interaction with an entirely different crowd. If you live in LA and haven’t rooted for our local teams, I would highly recommend it!


My Mom Came to Visit Me! ⟩
January 26, 2012, by Chelsea

Living in LA School/Life Balance What are OS/OT?

Last Monday on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, my amazing mom drove two and a half hours from San Diego just to hang out with me for the day. We are both avid beach-goers and so, naturally, we decided to beeline for the Pacific Ocean. We hopped on the 110S, merged onto the 105W, and didn’t stop until we saw the bright sun shining over the sparkling water. One of our favorite restaurants in Manhattan Beach is called the North End Café, which had a debut on Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives and has been a hot spot ever since. We drove down Highland Avenue, but passed the North End Café since it looked so busy and we decided to try somewhere new with a good view. Well we got a great view, but the food was nothing to brag about and I can’t even remember the name of the restaurant.

After eating, my mom and I went to a small grassy park looking over the beach and sat down. There were four blond little girls ranging from 2 years old to 7 years old and they had three skateboards. The grassy park started on Highland Avenue and went almost all the way down the hill to the beach. It started with a plateau, then curved downward, then plateaued, and so on. The four little blond girls would sit on their skateboards and ride down the hill from the top to the bottom laughing and screaming for joy. My mom and I had so much fun watching them and I couldn’t help thinking about my Sensory Integration elective and how these little girls were organizing play and integrating their senses so flawlessly. In my head I’m thinking, “Wow, they are receiving proprioceptive, vestibular, and tactile input from this activity, all of which is aiding their childhood development and they don’t even know it!” The proprioceptive skill of knowing where their body was in space will help their motor coordination, the vestibular input of motion caused by gravity will help their postural control, and the tactile input of holding onto the skateboard will help their skilled movement as well as emotional development! After taking this sensory integration course I don’t know if I will ever be able to look at kids playing without thinking in occupational therapy terms!


Back to reality ⟩
January 24, 2012, by Chris

School/Life Balance

Well, week three of my last semester at USC has begun and it hasn’t quite hit me yet. In less than 6 months I’ll be starting my first level II fieldwork in San Diego. My break was fantastic, aside from the actual winter weather that I did not miss. I had plenty of free time to play basketball with some friends I hadn’t seen in a while and just hang out with my dogs. For Christmas, my girlfriend gave me tickets to the Army All American Bowl game in San Antonio, Texas. It was my first time visiting Texas, but it’s a really cool city.


Welcome to 2012 ⟩
January 11, 2012, by Alix

Classes School/Life Balance

Happy New Year! This week marks the beginning of a new semester — the home stretch of the Master’s program for myself and my fellow ambassadors. Winter break was (as always) much too short, but it does feel good to be getting back into the swing of things. I’m taking five classes this spring: two core courses focused on quantitative and qualitative research, a course about Lifestyle Redesign, an elective focused on OT’s role in the primary care setting (kind of like a mini-fieldwork), and a course about motivational interviewing and therapeutic communication.

I’m definitely looking forward to the Lifestyle Redesign course, especially because I’ve decided to stay here at USC for my clinical doctorate, and I’ll be focusing on Lifestyle Redesign. (Yay OTD!) Some other things I’m looking forward to in 2012: Learning how to surf, finding a good gluten-free bread recipe, exploring California even more (Joshua Tree and Yosemite are two goal destinations), and, of course, getting married. I have high hopes for a busy but very fulfilling year. :coolsmile:


Winter Break! ⟩
December 12, 2011, by Alix

School/Life Balance

I’m almost done with the Fall 2011 semester — one more final left tomorrow, and then I’ll have three weeks of break. I’m looking forward to seeing a lot of movies, skiing, and possibly knitting a few scarves. And I’m glad that I won’t be braving the airports at all this holiday season, which is a nice change for me. Next semester is going to be a busy one: I’ll be taking four classes, teaching yoga, and working, along with all the usual craziness of wedding-planning and trying to fit in some fun. I’m especially looking forward to one of my courses, “Therapeutic Communication for the Healthcare Practitioner,” taught by one of my favorite professors, Dr. Linda Fazio. She’s going to teach us about how to use motivational interviewing, cognitive behavioral therapy, and mindfulness in our occupational therapy practice. I’ve always been interested in the psychosocial elements of therapy, so it should be a particularly useful class for me. But first: relaxation. Happy holidays to all. :coolsmile:

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