Getting Into The Business

Yesterday I met with an occupational therapist. In my 18 years of being around occupational therapists I have never met one that isn’t the nicest person in the room. She was extremely helpful. We talked about schooling and even volunteer opportunities for me. Here are three main points she told me on how to get into occupational therapy masters program:

  1. Get a bachelors in anything, but make sure it has the required classes for the OT program you want to apply for. I’m planning on psychology, and she said that many of her colleagues have a bachelors in psychology.
  2. The more experience you have, the more likely you will be excepted into an OT program. Specifically volunteering with an OT or with children.
  3. It takes a minimum of 6 years, 4 years for a bachelors and 2 years in the OT program. The OT I talked to took 2 years in-between to work with kids. This gave her more experience, like I said, the more experience the better.

The OT I talked to said that it’s harder to go into private practice right away, so it’s best to get a job within the health care system, i.e. a hospital. Private practice makes a lot more money, and thats what I want to do in the long run, but start within a system to gain experience and seniority. There is a huge need for paediatric private practice which is great for people like me who want to open a private practice eventually. The OT I spoke with told me she’s always wanted to work with kids, and I have also always wanted to too. Being in the field is a very rewarding job. From what I see, its the best job out there.

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2 thoughts on “Getting Into The Business

  1. My school (University of Florida) had a straight-through program, five years. Don’t know if they still do. I definitely agree with experience before opening private practice. Often that experience is with adults first, then children. It really helps to have the basics down, as treating children you really have to know your manual skills and think on your toes to adapt it to a moving target in a playful fashion! We make it look easy, but it’s not! 😉

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