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OT Master’s Degree, Applicant Grew Up in Vietnam

I always wanted to ‘make a difference’ rather than merely make a living and I considered a number of healthcare careers to enable me to achieve my goal. I have opted to seek a career in Occupational Therapy for a number of reasons. I want to work in a field in which ‘one to one’ long-term relationships with patients are the norm and to witness and share the joy of progress being made. I am also aware that OT is a vital and increasingly necessary service at a time of an ‘aging population’.  When a child in Vietnam, I saw my own grandmother, who suffered from leukemia, gradually decline and become increasingly distressed as her mobility decreased. I learned later, as an adult, that specialist intervention could have helped her and decided that I should like to help other people’s grandparents to relearn or retain their mobility and to maintain their ‘joie de vivre’ for as long as possible. I come from a culture in which the aged are treated with special respect and care for their experience and knowledge.

This application is being made after substantial research. I have read extensively about the profession, volunteered at an OT Hand Clinic during the summer and interned as an assistant to several Occupational Therapists at United Cerebral Palsy. Working with caring and skilled professionals was an inspiring experience and confirmed me in my choice of career path. While shadowing at UCP, I had the opportunity to assist Jennifer, an Occupational Therapist, in weekly sessions with a boy of 3 years diagnosed with Batten Disease, a fatal neurodegenerative condition. The goal was to help him maintain functional skills to prolong his active life and permit him to enjoy the time left to him to the maximum. The Therapist sought to delay the loss of hand and finger dexterity, caused by the disease. Despite a fatal prognosis and a gradual loss of the ability to do such things as to feed himself, Jennifer continued to motivate him. A major milestone was enabling him to play with his favorite toy, Playdoh, and to integrate this into his therapy sessions to maintain a degree of strength.

My bachelor degree is in Psychology and Social Behavior. I have experience of working with children as an ‘Inclusion Facilitator’, helping children with special needs to improve their behaviors and as an Applied Behavior Analysis Therapist helping children on the Autism spectrum.  I have also undertaken voluntary work with Special Needs children as a Behavioral Therapist at an OT based ‘karate clinic’. Taken together with my specific exposure to the work of OT’s, I regard my professional and volunteer background as providing an excellent basis for future OT training.

I have assisted in research projects and have thoroughly enjoyed this exposure. I see the characteristics of an excellent Occupational Therapist as overlapping considerably with those of a good researcher. Both need to be able to plan and set realistic but challenging goals, to be flexible in reaching those goals, to be determined, positive and single minded, to co-operate happily with others to achieve common goals and to have the ability to think analytically, creatively and originally when dealing with a problem. I know that each patient is unique and that the problems of each call for a ‘tailor-made’ approach in consultation with the patient and professionals from other specialties where necessary.

I have happily worked, studied and socialized with people of many cultural and social backgrounds. I understand that cultural awareness and sensitivity is vital in healthcare provision and especially in a field in which positive long-term relationships need to be created and maintained to maximize effectiveness. As an immigrant myself, I am aware of the challenges involved in adapting to a new cultural environment. I have had the opportunity to study in Spain for several months, I am fascinated by cultural contrasts and greatly enjoy exposure to other cultures and sharing knowledge of my own rich heritage. I speak English, Vietnamese and Spanish.

I am aware that there is a shortage of trained therapists and that this shortage is felt most keenly in deprived communities. It is my hope to work in such a community and to spread knowledge about the value of OT to those who might be unaware of its great value and especially among the many formerly fit but aging members of the population who may wish to prolong their active life but be unaware of how this might be achieved.

To summarize: I have a bachelor degree in subjects that are highly relevant to the specialty; I have significant voluntary and professional experience in relating to patients on a one to one basis; I am familiar with the work of therapists from my shadowing and volunteer experience; I believe that I possess the personal characteristics and academic potential that will enable me to become an excellent therapist. However, my main recommendation is a genuine passion to acquire the high-level skills and knowledge that will enable me to achieve my goal of helping others to achieve and maintain an active and happy life.

Degree sought, field, or place of origin!

Statements of Excellence in OT

As a young man, I enjoyed very much working with autistic adolescents, despite the great challenges involved. As a result, I especially appreciate the opportunity to help applicants to graduate school in OT to get accepted and to have fulfilling careers.

There are many excellent graduate programs in Occupational Therapy that will prepare you for a lifetime of distinguished service in OT, providing you with the knowledge, skills and value of lifelong learning to practice occupational therapy in customary and innovative ways within an ever-changing world. Throughout the course of your studies, you will become an exceptionally keen observers, active listener, creative strategist, critical thinker, resourceful leader and practical educator who helps people set and meet goals, overcome challenges and thrive in the face of adversity.

What a difference a day makes

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Sample 1st Paragraph OT, Occupational Therapy Masters, Single Mom

I hope very much to be accepted to your Master’s Program in Occupation Therapy at XXXX College because of the sheer excellence of your program in addition to your location not far from where I live. Even though life can often be difficult for a single mom like me, I take great delight in the fact that I have found and I am realizing my vocation, helping people, fulfilling my dream in Occupational Therapy. For years as a restaurant manager, while I enjoyed my work and the people that I work with, I was not in a hurry to get there in the morning like I am with my job as an OT Assistant. I think about our patients even when I am not working, wondering how they are, and coming up with good ideas and plans for how I will help them the next day at work.

Great Accomplishments in Occupational Therapy

Some of the recent and greatest accomplishments in occupational therapy have been technological in nature.

Technological advances have allowed for more specific diagnostic techniques, which have, in turn, lead to more specific therapy.

The specificity of the therapy has allowed for more improvements in the ability to perform all activities required for daily living, therefore allowing for more independence or increased independence for people who without this technology would be dependent on others for certain life tasks.

The idea of increasing technology to make life easier allows for those in need of occupational therapy to have the ability to life a fuller and more independent life without necessarily regaining full ability.

The technological increases that make life easier are improved splinting techniques, improved prosthetics, more research into various adaptation aids and more distinctly developed therapies based on improved knowledge.

Diagnostic Measures

Diagnostic measures have increased tremendously over the past few years: there used to be the ability to take x-rays and that was it! Now the field has expanded in such a way that it is possible to use imaging techniques that show the parts of the brain being used during certain tasks and therefore what portion of the brain has been damaged.

The increase in diagnostic ability has also allowed for more specific physiological understanding of what portions of the brain control which parts of the body and what will result from the specific damage created. The more the body is understood, the greater our ability will be to help the body heal injured parts.

Mild Adjustments

Sometimes the simplest adjustments to objects makes a formerly difficult task a lot easier—if a patient has a difficult time with opposition and fine motor skills, certain adjustments will need to be made to certain objects to increase the ease of life.

An adjustment that increases the ease of living could be as simple as finding or creating a thicker, specially shaped writing instrument. Increasing the diameter of a writing instrument will decrease the amount of fine motor skills required to write. It allows the patient to be able to write without fully regaining or learning the fine motor skills until the ability has been developed.

A simple adjustment made to an everyday object can make the world of difference to a person’s life.

Object adjustment is used man areas that require fine motor skills. One simple task that requires modification until full strength can be developed is the use of scissors, for example. Scissors require the clenching and subsequent release of the hand and fingers to cut the paper. This can be difficult if movement and strength is compromised.

This has resulted in the creation of scissors that are easier to squeeze and open without stretching then hand just relaxing. The use of these scissors allows for the initial cutting motion to be achieved without the force required for normal scissors.

Once the motions required for using scissors have been learned, normal scissors are sometimes modified until development is complete.

Prosthetics

A major technological advancement that is changing occupational therapy right now is the increased realism of prosthetics.

The realism of prosthetics is important because it allows the person to be able to perform all the normal activities required for daily living, and the more realistic the prosthetic, the easier it is for the person to acquire the technique required to use the device and the increased normalcy of the way the device functions.

If the prosthetic functions nearly identically to the normal limb that was rendered

Nonfunctional, the ease of use would increase tremendously.

The improvements made to prosthetics include improved fit, life-like appearance, almost normal movement, durable material, and a decrease in energy exertion.

Through the increasing abundance of technology it has become possible to motorize prosthetics—mainly hand prosthetics. The electronic prosthetics respond to nerve stimuli from non-movement muscles and allow certain movements to occur within the prosthetic. This allows the person to control the prosthetic in a similar way to their old limb and perform much of the same actions (Wavte, Dodd, MacDonald, Stoppard, 2010), increasing independence and the mobility of the prosthetic.

Another technological increase in prosthetics is the creation of more natural movement ability in the prosthetic. This allows for lower limb prosthetics to have a knee and results in more natural control of the device (Esquenazi and Meier, 1996).

Assisting Devices

A key technological improvement that has altered occupational therapy is the creation and improvement of assisting devices.

These devices include lift modifications for vehicles and houses, adaptation for houses and vehicles themselves, specialization of wheel chairs, the creation of speaking devices and improved hearing devices and voice recognition software.

Each of the device creations and improvements are based solely on technology and are improving life for thousands of people.

The vehicle modifications made in terms of lifts and specialized driving adjustments have allowed for independence to be maintained and/or broadened. Some main vehicle modifications include lifts which transport people into and out of a vehicle, extended pedals, hand pedals and seat modifications.

These modifications allow for vehicles to be driven in spite of any obstacles that would make a normal car impossible to drive. The ability to drive a car is a huge step of independence in our society, which allows for less reliance on others.

The decreased reliance on others allows for normalcy to return to the lives of injured persons, therefore increasing their quality of life.

Stimulus Control

Stimulus control is the use of various techniques to suppress over active stimuli receptors: this includes the use of pressure and weighted objects, which decompress the nervous system and cause relaxation.

This is a common practice used in children with autism. Autistic children commonly become overwhelmed in certain situations, causing an immense anxiety problem that is most easily decreased if continuous pressure is applied to large portions of the body.

The pressure placed on the body stimulates the nervous system so that after an initial increase in anxiety the body will then relax. This technique is incorporated into occupational therapy by the use of weighted vests or clothing, “steam rollers” (contraptions that have slightly weighted rollers on top and underneath the person, allowing the person to move between the rollers), or simple hugging.

Over time, the goal of stimulus control is for the person himself or herself to be able to control anxiety themselves through various, more traditional coping methods.

Conclusion

Technology has altered the world we will live in immense ways. Occupational therapy—being a fairly new field—has been able to use the technology available and expand it to fit patients’ needs.

The technological expansion has allowed for better initial diagnosis, better and more useful splints, constant muscle stimulation, mild adaptations that increase the independence of patients, improved prosthetics, and better treatment of children with cognitive and physical impairments, some of which have been covered in this article.

Sample 1st Paragraph for a Master’s Degree Application in OT, Occupational Therapy, Jewish Applicant

A lot of young Jewish women choose Occupational Therapy as a career, for many complex reasons that I think are a general reflection of the Jewish as well as female embrace of diversity and spirituality. I come from a family and community that places a high priority on community service, having a vocation or a calling rather than just making a living, and especially concern and care for the most vulnerable and disadvantaged among us. For all these reasons, I feel that I am a good fit with a Master’s Program in OT.

Dr Robert Edinger on Occupational Therapy

I began my studies in the humanities and social sciences, first thinking about psychology and ending up majoring in philosophy as an undergraduate student. Along the way, I had several work study jobs that made big impressions on my long term career development, including in the area of occupational therapy. I was employed for about one year for the Occupational and Developmental Training Center in Bloomington, Indiana. I went in at night in order to care for developmentally disabled adolescents, getting them up and rolling in the morning to greet their day, breakfast, toiletries, etc. One client in particular has proven to have etched out a most enduring memory in my mind. My client Tracy was 16 years old and built like a Sumari Warrior. She also had razor sharp teeth, all of which made her rather dangerous because she had the mental development of a 6-month-old baby. On my first day of work, within hours of my arrival, I found myself prying her mouth open to secure the release of the fingers of shrieking staff person whose fingers had been bitten to the bone.

It is our duty to make sure that Tracy’s life is fulfilling. Given what Tracy has to work with, this is no easy task. OT is a science and an art of its own with some of the greatest challenges in the world. I am convinced that this area of studies attracts applicants many if not most of whom have golden hearts and a passion for service to the weak and disabled, those who need them most. This is why it is a great pleasure and honor for me to help you in the drafting of a statement that is highly effective and will be successful at getting you admitted to the program of your choice in Occupational Therapy.


All of the Statement samples on this web site were written more than 2 years ago and all are anonymous.

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Sample 1st 2 Paragraphs, Master’s Degree OT, Occupational Therapy

Since childhood I have wanted to ‘make a difference’ rather than just make a living. I became specifically attracted to the idea of becoming an Occupational Therapist when I saw the difference that OT made in the life of my brother. His therapy was designed to improve his fine motor skills particularly to enable him to write clearly and was ultimately very successful. I also witnessed therapists ‘in action’ in the nursing home that I visited as a volunteer helper in 6th to 8th grade and was greatly impressed and inspired by their dedication and patience and the ways in which they interacted with their patients.

I am aware that the specialty calls for particular and perhaps rare characteristics such as great patience, excellent communication and planning skills, flexibility in approach and a need to consider problems with originality and creativity as well, of course, as a passion to help people to achieve their potential in overcoming the problems that they face. I am confident that I possess these qualities and that I have the potential to become an excellent therapist.

I have developed a special interest in Occupational Therapy primarily because I think that this field attracts good people who are interested in the most important things in life, rather than primarily making money and showing off what it can buy. Most of all, it is their sense of service to their fellowman. I also do a lot of work for nurses and social workers, for the same reasons. Five years ago exactly, I was living in the south of Mexico, working hard on my computer, drafting statements, and I lived with a family. Grandpa was in a wheelchair, and he would get daily visits from an OT professional. As I worked, I would look up and observe. I reflected at that time about the importance of what I was observing, especially for grandpa. But, it is also important to note that I feel strongly that the OT visit to grandpa was also healthy for the entire family and the visitors like myself as well. Especially his two grandchildren, who at that time were about 8 and 13. Clearly, this served to cultivate a sense of community in the children as well. It was healing for them to see someone caring for their grandfather.

Occupational Therapy: It isn't all work