IS BEING AN OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST THE RIGHT JOB FOR YOU?
What is an occupational therapist? An occupational therapist treats sick or disables patients by therapeutic use of everyday activities. They help patients develop, recover, and improve the skills needed for daily living and working.
What education is required to become and occupational therapist? A Master’s degree in occupational therapy is required. To get into a graduate program, a bachelors degree and specific coursework including biology, and physiology is required. Volunteer work in an occupational therapy session is required. Masters and Doctoral programs require twenty-four weeks of supervised fieldwork.
What skills/experience are required? Communication Skills – Listen to patients and explain their activities to them. Compassion – Have the desire to help people and improve their patients lives. Flexibility – Be flexible when determining treatment plans and devices. Interpersonal Skills – Earn the trust and respect of their patients. Patience – Be patient to provide quality care to the patients. Writing Skills – Explain clearly the treatment plan for the patient and any progress made.
How much will you make? The median annual average is $75,400 The high is $107,070 and the low is $50,500. On average these facilities make.. Nursing Care Facilities$83,430 Home Health Care Services$82,310 Offices of Therapists$72,430 Hospitals$75,140 Elementary and Secondary Schools$66,610
What will you be doing? Occupational therapists help people perform daily tasks of life. They help their patients become the person they were before they became injured or disabled. Occupational therapists can help patients mentally, physically, emotionally or developmentally. An occupational therapist creates a specific plan formed around their patient’s need. They also keep records of the patient’s progress. “Physical therapy teaches people how to walk, and occupational therapy teaches them how to dance”
Where will you work? They spend a lot of time on their feet while working with patients. Also may be required to lift and move patients or heavy equipment. Many work in multiple facilities and have to travel from one job to another. Hospitals28% Offices22% Elementary & Secondary12% Nursing Care Facilities9% Home Healthcare Services9% “Occupational Therapists held about 113,200 jobs in 2012”
The Pros and Cons of being and occupational therapist PROSCONS High DemandMasters Degree Required High SalaryExtended Work Hours Careers available in many places Travel to multiple job sites Improve the lives of othersPhysically Demanding Work ExperienceLicense Required
Cool Things About the Job It’s one of today’s fastest growing careers. There are 324 college/university-based educational programs. Approximately 117,000 occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants are licensed to practice in all the states. There are many different places you can work at. You can make a difference while still having a life outside of work.