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'Alzheimer's and Dementia seemed peculiar to me' - Occupational Therapy Grad School Essay

ksuydam54 2 / 1  
Oct 18, 2014   #1
Why OT as a career? How does an OT degree relate to immediate and long term goals?
Describe how your personal, education and professional background will help you achieve your goals.

As a twelve year old, my nana suffering from Alzheimer's and Dementia seemed peculiar to me. Following a fall in the bathroom, an occupational therapist worked with my family and her, to determine the best care and treatment plan. She benefited using steps and exercises to accommodate her decline, in function and ability. Going over nana's day, we reviewed and implemented cues, to help her regain her independence. We discussed her unique behaviors and needs, and what times were best for her to perform everyday tasks: her hygiene, meal preparations, and household duties. Together, we customized to-do lists, and instructions for common activities. These reminders were posted around the house, and easily incorporated into her everyday routine. When a home evaluation was performed, the shower was assessed as being unsafe; an adaptive shower chair was suggested to assist her. My grandparents were able to maintain an overall higher quality of life, with help from the therapist. Witnessing these incidents and seeing how prevalent it is, affecting so many families and individuals, intrigued me to want to lend a hand. My intrinsic passion surfaced in a rewarding career that incorporates my caring spirit and drive, to provide individuals the opportunity to attain their highest potential.

Having the opportunity to be around flourishing occupational therapists, has compelled me to set feasible ambitions. Continuously, I focus on goal directed activities, in the continual process of learning Occupational Therapy. Connections with professors, classmates and mentors, will help to strengthen, and apply skills, values, attitudes and professional behaviors, catalyzing my professional improvement and identity. Working with other dedicated and compassionate therapists, I will gain new viewpoints. With direct experiences and active practice, I will continue to interact with a variety of ages, impairments, and multicultural populations, shadowing and subsequently implementing client-centered practices. Diverse dynamic interactions, will competently improve my capabilities in developing, restoring, and promoting occupation-based intervention. With creative and innovative life-enhancing adaptations, I will tailor therapy programs to get clients up, around and functioning, at the highest level possible. When substantially knowledgeable and well established, I will address unmet occupational and educational needs, in communities lacking accessible services. As I continue to discover my strengths, passions, and individual talents, imminent goals will orbit around life long learning and socialization.

Experiences I have had in my personal, educational and professional background have inspired me, and will help me to flourish as an Occupational Therapist. Working with both my grandparents, and family members has exposed my charismatic, honest, kind-hearted nature, in helping others. Growing up in a single parent home, losing my father to cancer, I developed a patient, strong-willed, compassionate, nature; shaping who I am today. Being the oldest of three, a role model, has helped me to establish a hardworking, dynamic, and supportive personality. Helping to raise my two younger siblings and, always working to better myself, I take pride in my innovative uplifting resolute attitude, to carry out activities of daily life. My bright and determined stance in overcoming copious obstacles is one of many valuable traits to possess in a health care career. Through a dedicated self-directed quest, I have learned to utilize my individual drive, to work my hardest towards what means the most to me. Taking time to reflect, and acknowledge the holistic lifestyle I lead, continuously encourages me to flourish, sustaining continuous steady growth. I am certain the motivation, determination, and discipline I possess, will provide the superlative foundation to professionally integrate myself into this career.

Having an interest in our human kind and society, prompted me to double major in Communication's and Psychology, at Kean University. Everyday we communicate with others, but how many do we connect with? As a therapist, it is crucial to understand, connect, and build rapport with each client, in every dynamic engagement. Superb interpersonal skills and behavioral strategies are essential to build trust, exceed client expectations, and to provide exceptional care and service. Choosing to study behavior patterns and norms of individual's, and how to communicate across a wide range of situations, aligns with my passion and provides the stepping-stones to pursue this career path.

Donating my time at UMOM, Arizona's largest homeless shelter, helped me to interact with children between the ages of 4 to 17 years old. Children had various skill levels, with one on one interaction. I took part in enhancing their reading and writing proficiencies. Previous work experience has helped me develop strong leadership and practice, working in a team. Helping to lead in a team setting provided me the skills to be adaptable and flexible in various situations. Each interaction is unique, as each guest has different specific needs. In previous work, as in therapy, the main goal is to address what is of utmost importance to the individual and help them accomplish it. With my chaotic schedule, of work and school, I diligently enhanced my time management, organizational skills, and professional self-image; imperative attributes to possess to be a pronounced therapist.

My experiences at Nelson Pediatric Therapy, Dynamic Rehab, and Montecito Post Acute Care have furthermore benefited me greatly. At Nelson Pediatric Therapy, I observed children and adolescents, in home and clinic settings, receiving Occupational, Physical, and Speech therapy. Clients attempted to live comfortable lifestyles, struggling with cognitive, motor, perceptual, social, or sensory processing concerns. With numerous accessible therapists and clients, I had the privilege to observe diverse sessions and treatments. At Dynamic Rehab, I shadowed an exceptionally skilled nine-year certified hand therapist. With her immense experience, and wide array of clients, she applied comprehensive therapy programs with therapeutic modalities. At Montecito, therapists main focus was on the comfort and health of clients, emphasizing on strengthening, balance training, increasing range of motion, to be able to optimally participate in their own living environments.

My passion has been found in a gratifying, challenging, motivating career, promoting positive growth and change, in others and in myself. Every minute I spend in the vicinity of a therapist, is another minute I am convinced, this lifelong learning profession is the best fit for me. I am helping clients to promote and regain substantial independence, by incorporating creative, simplistic, effective exercises, to live an attainable life. I possess the foundational cognitive, social, emotional, and physical concepts; acquiring admittance into the program will continue to build upon these, constructing more advanced and complex skills. I am confident I possess the enthusiasm, passion, and drive to be a positive asset in your program.
vangiespen - / 4,134 1449  
Oct 18, 2014   #2
Kim, your essay is extremely long and thus, difficult to read. I strongly advice you to whittle it down content wise. One way of doing that is to choose only the most important volunteer activity to discuss in the essay. Also, cut down on the story about your grandmother at the beginning. Instead, bring up the statement about being exposed to Occupational Therapists early in life, skimming over your grandmother's illness in the process. Too much space and time was devoted to discussing it when you needed to make the reader concentrate instead on the way the illnesses in your family helped you develop an outlook about OT.

The essay is really informative. It just needs to be rearranged in order to make it more interesting. Try to speak directly to the reader instead of beating around the bush. The admissions officer does not have too much time to read the submitted essays so you will be doing yourself and the officer a favor by making sure that he reads the important parts as soon as possible.

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