May 18, 2021
Commencement may be over with, but we’re still celebrating our graduates! The Class of 2021 worked so hard, and we know they’re ready for their next steps. We asked six Health Professions graduates to reflect on what their time at Mizzou has meant to them.
Master of Occupational Therapy
What was your favorite aspect of the Mizzou occupational therapy program?
My favorite thing about the MU OT program was the community presence and relationships they’ve established over many years, which afforded us students the opportunity to do coursework and training within the community. A few of my peers and I completed a yearlong internship at Service for Independent Living (SIL) as OT access service interns. We were able to empower community members with disabilities through outreach and services to maximize their independence through the use of assistive technology and durable medical equipment.
What advice do you have for current Mizzou OT students?
I would encourage current OT students to get involved and immersed as much as possible into the community, programs and clubs/organizations. Another layer to one’s education goes beyond the classroom, such as volunteering, networking, and rapport-building with peers and colleagues. It makes a massive difference in an individual’s performance and provides a sense of togetherness within a cohort. In addition, it makes for great memories.
What was your favorite Health Professions class?
What did you learn outside the classroom?
One of the biggest things I learned outside the classroom was the importance of being a team player. I’ve found myself in several team settings, working as a TA with two others, participating in Mizzou Alternative Breaks, serving on my sorority’s executive board, and more. I learned how to communicate my needs, to embrace collaboration, to stay flexible and reliable and to always be ready to help. I will always remember my time in these organizations, and while there was always work to do, camaraderie was a strong force that allowed us to enjoy it!
Hometown: Sedalia, Missouri
What will you miss most about Mizzou?
I think it will be hard not to miss the little things at Mizzou like the late nights at Ellis, laughing with friends at 1 a.m. during all-nighters, or walking by the columns in the spring. But I think what I’ll miss the most is the ability to see my friends every day, just studying or going to class.
What do you love about Mizzou Physical Therapy?
What makes Mizzou PT so special is the opportunity to not only grow as clinicians but the opportunity to give back to our community. Each semester we spend time treating patients in our pro bono clinic as well as volunteer in numerous events. My favorite events were “build days” for SWITCHED, an organization that adapts toys to make them more accessible for children with varying disabilities, and Sundays spent with Adapted Gymnastics.
What did you like best about Mizzou’s Radiography program?
What’s next for you?
BHS in Public Health
Tell me a little bit about your career aspirations after graduation. What’s next for you?
After graduation, I will hopefully be staying at Mizzou for another two years for the Master of Public Health (MPH) program. I want to specialize my studies with the Global Health certificate that the MPH program offers. I have always wanted to work internationally, and I also hope to join the Peace Corps after these next two years.
Were you in any clubs or organizations during your time here? What was that like?
During the first semester of freshman year, I joined the Women’s Club Ultimate Frisbee Team. I had never played frisbee before and had barely ever even picked up a disc. I am now one of the three team captains. This team has been a vital part of my college years, giving me friendship and sportsmanship. I am excited to keep playing for the next two years.
Hometown: Independence, Missouri
How did Mizzou’s social work program adequately prepare you for a career in the field?
The social work program absolutely prepared me for my future career in the field. The dedication of the social work professors to instill the key skills and knowledge necessary to succeed is unmatched. I could sing praises for the social work professors all day long, they deserve the world for what they do. The various group projects, research assignments and general coursework was very clearly well thought out and designed to prepare students for what real life work is really going to be like. The practicum placement is met with the same approach and is such a crucial final step to have real experience as a social worker.
What’s next for you?
I have been accepted into the Master of Social Work program at Mizzou (online) and begin this fall. I will be pursuing a career in the mental health field and am passionate about working with clients through a trauma-informed care approach.