It’s a simple question but one with a complex answer: What is Occupational Therapy?
That’s the topic Ithaca College graduate student Seth Werlin recently tackled in a short video detailing the breadth of occupational therapy. The video won third place in the American Occupational Therapy Association’s student video competition which was announced at a national conference in April.
Going beyond the textbook definition, Werlin’s 96-second video discussed different groups of people impacted by occupational therapists and the methods used to help them.
“Seth did a great job of creating a simple yet powerful video,” Ithaca College professor Kimberly Wilkinson said. “Our field has so much diversity. We work with people across the lifespan and in a huge range of settings. This is a wonderful thing, but sometimes it makes it hard for the public to understand who exactly occupational therapists are and what kind of work we're doing."
The contest called for entries aimed at increasing awareness of the profession and ones that could be used for outreach and recruitment purposes. Videos were judged for their creativity, impact, and ability to reach diverse audiences.
"Seth's video is a great addition to the promotional materials that our national organization can use to help get this message across so we can reach more people and help them live their lives to the fullest," Wilkinson said.
Werlin wasn't the only member of the School of Health Sciences and Human Performance community at the AOTA conference. Ithaca College had a strong presence in San Diego with several professors and recent graduates contributing to presented materials.
Julie Dorsey co-authored a poster titled Preventing and Managing Computer Vision Syndromewhich was presented by colleagues at the conference. Also, Melinda Cozzolino was a contributing author of masters theses presented by Ithaca College alums Christine Slocombe and Taryn Michelitch. Slocombe's thesis was titled Transitions in the Elderly: Changes when entering a long-term care setting and Michelitch's was titled Occupational imbalance in activity-restricted pregnancy.