The University of Toledo recently won several awards at the Ohio Occupational Therapy Association annual conference and had more student presentations than any other institution.
“Our wins reflect very well on the programs here at The University of Toledo. It shows our commitment to the field of occupational therapy on the state and national level,” Dr. Julie Thomas, professor and director of the UT Occupational Therapy Program, said.
The mission of the Ohio Occupational Therapy Association is to promote the profession of occupational therapy, address professional issues in occupational therapy practice, and advance the practice of occupational therapy in the state.
Among the winners at the conference were Dr. Martin Rice, Dr. Barbara Miller and Dr. Beth Ann Hatkevich. Rice joined UT in 1997 and was recognized for his contributions to the occupational therapy body of knowledge through research. Miller won the Pioneer Award for non-occupational therapist contributions to the field of occupational therapy. And Hatkevich was recognized for co-chairing the association’s continuing education committee for northwest Ohio.
“Dr. Rice has published several articles that have impacted occupational therapy,” Thomas said. “Prior to becoming associate dean in July, Dr. Miller was a fieldwork coordinator. She had a lot of influence on students doing fieldwork portions or programs, and has been a mentor for student projects and research. Her background is in social science, and students benefit from different perspectives.”
Faculty members were not the only ones who made a great impression at this year’s conference. A large number of UT students had the opportunity to present their work. Katelin Rudolph, a graduate student, presented her research that centers on safe patient handling for health-care providers.
“A common patient handling task, like a transfer, can be risky to both the health-care provider and the patient. My research simulates a patient transfer and measures the amount of force at the hands for the caregiver,” Rudolph said. “It’s wonderful to disseminate research and be able to share with others what I have learned so far. As a student, it was really meaningful to discuss research with practitioners and other students.”
The University will participate in the National Occupational Therapy Association Annual Conference in Philadelphia this spring when more faculty and students will have the opportunity to share their research and expertise.