Tables representing local providers of OT services and equipment
and a job board
According to Amy Brzuz, OTD, assistant professor of occupational
therapy and a lead organizer of the event, the 70 occupational
therapists who are POTA members will be invited, as will all
prospective students in the area who are interested in OT as a
profession. Brzuz added that the public is welcome to attend the
While the party is the main event of the month-long celebration,
Gannon OT will be celebrating in other ways, particularly those
that involve service to the community.
At the Ruskin, Florida campus, where the Occupational Therapy
Doctorate (OTD) program that began in 2015 now has more than 50
students, the Student Occupational Therapy Association (SOTA) will
mark the anniversary with an in-house celebration.
SOTA recently raised over $500 for the Stay In Step initiative
for the OTD program's community partner that will be presented this
month. Stay In Step assists those with spinal cord injury in their
recovery. SOTA has been very involved with the organization with
research and in identifying OT needs and providing volunteers to
In Erie, several OT students are collaborating with
community partners at the spring portion of the eighth annual
Purposeful Movement and Wellness Program for people with
Parkinson's disease in conjunction with Parkinson Partners of
Gannon OT students will also visit Erie Homes for Children and
Adults' Move facility on four occasions in April, while OT students
are organizing teams for the Autism Society - Northwestern
Pennsylvania's 16th Annual Walk for Autism.
Gannon students and faculty were invited to present at the AOTA
conference in Philadelphia. Eight students and two faculty members
from the Erie campus attended while five students from the
Occupational Therapy Doctorate program at the Ruskin campus
presented their research. Four faculty members and 24 students from
Ruskin campus were in attendance.
Occupational therapy is one of the largest majors at Gannon with
234 students enrolled in master's-level and OTD programs across
Gannon's two campuses. As professional practitioners, they will
focus on helping clients perform everyday activities to their
highest potential. Some examples include: Teaching Wounded Warriors
how to hold their children again after limb loss; helping babies in
the NICU learn to feed, breathe and swallow so they can thrive;
providing recommendations for assistive technology in the vehicle
or home so older adults can age safely; and helping stroke
survivors re-learn how to bathe, groom, dress and cook for
themselves, among other occupations.
Today, more than 213,000 occupational therapy practitioners
nationwide help people of all ages participate in the things they
want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday
That's something to celebrate.