Keuka College will be well represented at the Master’s Level Graduate Research Conference Saturday, April 20, at SUNY Brockport.
Nine occupational therapy majors will present original research, including:
Emily Conrad and Alicia Steeves: “Effects of Parent Training for Children with Behavioral Difficulties.”
The Master’s Level Graduate Research Conference is open to the public and will feature work by hundreds of master’s level students across the disciplines from Brockport and more than 30 other colleges and universities.
Students will present original research and artistic endeavors in poster sessions, oral presentations, and creative performances. In addition, there will be workshops for on career development and doctoral study and one for visiting faculty on government and foundation grant opportunities.
Dr. Timothy Killeen, president of the SUNY Research Foundation and SUNY vice chancellor for research, will deliver the keynote address on “National and International Change Research.”
Professor of Occupational Therapy Jean Wannall and graduate students Emily Conrad and Cindy Prober represented Keuka College and the OT profession at the recent Healthcare Alliance of the Finger Lakes’ Career Exploration Day at Finger Lakes Community College.
More than 270 students from 15 Finger Lakes high schools learned about health care and human service needs, according to Wannall.
The Healthcare Alliance of the Finger Lakes is a partnership of private and public sector agencies whose primary goal is to create solutions for finding and keeping a qualified workforce in the healthcare industry within the local area.
“The main focus of the career fair is to expose our youth to various health care professions and agencies while encouraging them to learn, work and live in the Finger Lakes area,” said Wannall. “Various professionals from around the area gave of their time to present information about their chosen profession.”
Including the trio from Keuka, who shared what it was like to be an occupational therapist.
“Students learned not only the educational requirements of becoming an OT, but where OTs work,” explained Wannall. “Demonstrations included the use of adaptive equipment, technology, and several evaluation tools typically used by OTs.”
Providing the high school students with a glimpse of what it is like to be occupational therapists was very important to Wannall.
“We need to reach out to the youth of today and get them excited about the potential career opportunities within health care or we are not going to have enough people to take care of the needs in our society,” she said.
Both graduate student presenters took the day off from their Level II internships to share their knowledge about the field and encourage younger students to explore the field of occupational therapy.
And it’s certainly worthy of exploration.
“According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, OT is one of the top 10 needed professions in health care right now,” said Wannall. “Baby boomers are retiring, people are living longer healthier lives and as a result staying in their own homes longer. Not only is there a huge need for therapists to work with the geriatric population but within school districts as well. According to recently released studies from the U.S. government, the rate of children on the autism spectrum has risen from 1 in 88 to 1 in 50, creating the potential for many more jobs for OTs working in pediatrics.”
Conrad is finishing up her second placement at Marcus Whitman School District and Prober is completing her second at Geneva General Hospital in both the acute and long-term care sections of the hospital. Both students will graduate in May and have already started interviewing for jobs in the local area.
Said Wannall: “Cindy and Emily are prime examples of what the Healthcare Alliance of the Finger Lakes is all about— keeping people in our area.”
Editor’s Note: This is the third in a series of features on recipients of the Judith Oliver Brown Memorial Award. The award, named after the late 1963 Keuka graduate, is supported by Brown’s family and the Class of ’63. It is designed to assist students pursuing culturally-oriented Field Periods.
For her Field Period, Katherine Kostuck is visiting several cities in Costa Rica and staying with a host family for two weeks
The junior occupational science major admits that living with a Spanish-speaking host family “will be exciting but challenging, as my Spanish could use some work around the edges. Living with them will teach me more about their culture first-hand and help develop my language skills.”
The Cortland resident is also taking a Spanish class.
“Being immersed in the culture will allow me to truly participate within it and come to appreciate everything it has to offer,” said Kostuck, before she left for Costa Rica. “I am excited to try the food and experience different customs. I believe this will be a life-changing opportunity.”
In addition to her Spanish classes, Kostuck will have the opportunity to visit volcanoes, rain forests, coffee plantations, hot springs, and gardens.
After Costa Rica, Kostuck will travel to Tacoma, Wash. and spend two weeks at Pioneer Place, an Alzheimer’s care center.
“My grandfather died of Alzheimer’s disease and when I was younger, I didn’t quite understand the disease, but I would like to,” said Kostuck. “This Field Period will allow me to better understand it by taking part in the patients’ daily activities. I intend to learn from the staff, as well as from the patients. I will not only take this knowledge into my occupational therapy classes, but also to the nursing home in which I volunteer in Penn Yan.”
Going to two different locations for her Field Period gives Kostuck “the opportunity to better understand other cultures. Everything I will experience on these trips will make me a better-rounded person. My brother and sister both had the chance to travel abroad and they told me how much they had learned and what they learned about themselves. Now it’s my turn.”
Editor’s Note: This is the ninth in a series of profiles of new, full-time faculty members who have joined the Keuka community.
What do a Titanic survivor and two Jamaican Olympians have in common?
They are all past clients of Stanley Paul, associate professor of occupational therapy (OT).
“I treated many different patients from all walks of life when I was an OT at Beth Abraham Health Services at the Bronx and Manhattan,” said Paul.
Paul “likes to meet new people and listen to their stories. One client I will never forget is Mary Kline, a woman with a strong German accent. When she was 16, she served as a maid on the Titanic. I will always remember her; she was sweet.”
Anastasia McManus ’14, an occupational science major from Painted Post, died Sunday, July 29 from injuries sustained in a July 17 car accident. She was 20.
McManus was involved in a number of organizations and clubs, including the Student Occupational Therapy Association (SOTA), Keuka College Chorale, Rotaract, Swim Team Club, and the Tuesday Non-Denominational Service Drama Team.
There are no calling hours and a private service is scheduled. According to Rev. Eric Detar, College chaplain, a memorial service will be held on campus in the fall semester.
She is survived by her parents, Jane and Kevin McManus; sisters Sera, Alia, and Asha; aunt Maureen McManus of Binghamton; uncle Richard Bienick and cousins Lindsay and Matt Bienick of Michigan; and aunt Christine Bienick and grandmother Josie Bienick of Indiana.
Donations in her name can be made to the Humane Society of Yates County, P.O. Box 12, Penn Yan, N.Y. 14527 or Keuka College’s Office of Development, P.O. Box 98, Keuka Park, N.Y. 14478.
Please feel free to share your thoughts about Anastasia.
Professor of Occupational Therapy Peter Talty will cap his 25-year teaching career at Keuka College with a “last lecture” Sunday, May 20.
It begins at 2 p.m. in Norton Chapel and is free and open to the public. A reception will follow in OT Lab (second floor, Hegeman Hall).
The title of the lecture is “Changing Addictive Behavior through Occupation,” and Talty offers this summary:
“It seems that trying to change habits is a challenge for everyone, especially those behaviors that are addictive in nature,” said Talty. “Habits that have a negative impact on health and well-being have been an interest of mine for several years. I have looked at the range of damaging habits from overeating, video games, pornography, smoking, alcohol, and so on and they all become entrenched behaviors that erode one’s quality of life and health. (more…)
The occupational therapy students pass skeletal hand forms back and forth along the table top counters in the science lab room. Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy Holly Preston quizzes them on the bones, joints and muscles that connect each intricate part of the fingers, thumb, palm and wrist.
As part of Preston’s pop quiz, the students palpate their palms and observe the innate response of their fingers to the change in pressure. In addition to the natural study their own bodies provide for the class – Applied Anatomy – Preston passes out iPads for students to share and instructs them to open up an app called “Muscle and Bone Anatomy 3D.”
Sophomore Caleigh Alterio uses her fingertips to scroll from a muscular view of the body to a 360-degree rotation of the skeleton. Across the table, sophomore Nick Scherer scrolls through a similar screen image on his personal iPad, pointing out how it lets the viewer see multiple layers of muscle and bone, all of which can be rotated in 3-D. The download was just $7, he says.
“It’s so cool just being able to actually see what we’re feeling,” sophomore Mackenzie Berger says as she mimics the movements of the arm, wrist and hand onscreen with her own appendage.
“I didn’t know the answer to [labeling] pictures on the lab exam, so this helps,” adds sophomore Taylor Szwec. Indeed, the iPad app boasts video and even has an online quiz feature that Preston encourages students to work through. (more…)
Three alumni of Keuka College’s Master of Science degree program in criminal justice administration and two students pursuing master’s degrees in occupational therapy (OT) were selected to present papers at the SUNY Brockport Graduate Student Research Conference Saturday, April 14.
Class of 2011 members Danielle T. Harrington and Sherry L. Hunter will present their Action Research Projects (ARP) at the conference, which will showcase the work of master’s level students from colleges and universities in Upstate New York and southern Ontario, Canada. Another member of the Class of 2011, Stephanie Caloren, was selected to present but is unable to attend. Also scheduled to present papers are fifth-year OT students Melissa Schlegel and Megan McGowan.
A year-and-half ago, Keuka College junior Desiree Marsh, an occupational therapy (OT) major from DeRuyter, was killed in an automobile accident.
Now, members of Marsh’s class have helped create a scholarship in her name to assist Keuka students enrolled in the OT master’s program with some of their financial costs.
“Pi Theta Epsilon (PTE), the OT honor society, wanted to establish the Desiree Marsh Memorial Scholarship to honor Desiree because she had such an impact on our whole class, and we wanted to commemorate her in some way,” said Emily Conrad, a senior OT major from Geneva, who serves as PTE president.
In the world of higher education, the niche Keuka has carved with its occupational sciences program is virtually unparalleled for a small, private, liberal arts college.
In 2010, three state-of-the-art occupational therapy (OT) labs opened where students are taught cutting-edge OT techniques. Keuka boasts a pediatric play lab, a clinical care lab and a community living skills lab, set up much like a small apartment, where some 95 upperclass and graduate students take classes in occupational science. Nearly all students in Keuka’s OT program go on to a fifth year of study at the graduate level, in order to qualify for the certification exam that must be passed to obtain a permanent license as an occupational therapist.
A unique change to the program is that while Keuka’s OT students are building diverse, hands-on skills, it’s not all happening inside the walls of hospitals or schools. Traditional placements like a hospital are now supplemented by non-traditional placements, said Jean Wannall, Ph.D., who coordinates field work placements for OT students and is a full professor in the program.
“We’re seeing fewer jobs in traditional settings because of the changes in Medicare and Medicaid,” said Wannall.”A lot of agencies are downsizing and letting therapists go, so we are training therapists to be entrepreneurs, to go out and seek places where there could be a niche. At hospitals, the length of stay is shorter and shorter these days as people are being pushed out into the community quicker and quicker. More care is happening out in the community.”
In addition, OTs may find more work with assisted living communities or home health care as more members of the aging population try to stay in their own homes as long as possible, Wannall said. Keuka lies in Yates County, one of the poorest counties in the state, and other opportunities for non-traditional OT support may lie in areas with migrant workers, those who are illiterate, or other needy individuals, she said.