Happy New Year! As we embark on 2017, one of my new year’s resolutions is to be courageous in setting bold goals for the progress of the School of Rehabilitation Therapy in collaboration with faculty, staff, students and other stakeholders. This work must build on our previous successes and address key areas that will support people and programs to move forward. An important first step is to acknowledge what we accomplished in 2016 so that our goals go beyond what we have already achieved. For this first blog of 2017, I wanted to highlight just a few of the School’s successes from 2016. I have organized these highlights under the 4 pillars of the university’s strategic framework:
Student Learning Experience
- Our graduating MScOT and MScPT students were offered a mock job interview session this past year to practice their interviewing skills. Volunteer therapists from our clinical community were the interviewers. The experience was well received and we are grateful for the engagement of local therapists in this experience.
- The first cohort of students from our new Aging and Health program graduated this past fall. These trail-blazers were actively engaged in providing us with feedback on all aspects of the program, and their input has already been used to improve the program for the second cohort.
- Students across all of our programs were involved in the delivery of 18 national and 4 international conference presentations in 2016. They were also authors or co-authors on 15 peer-reviewed scientific papers. Together, over 15% of our students were involved in scientific dissemination in 2016, which is great considering that less than 6% of our students are in research focused programs.
- Over the course of 2016, our faculty were successful in obtaining 16 new, externally funded research grants.
- In addition to these new grants, faculty continued work on an additional 56 funded grants already underway.
- We launched several new initiatives, continued to use resources wisely, and were able to maintain a balanced budget in 2016.
- Over the past year, the School hosted international visitors (faculty and students) from Scotland, Australia, Ethiopia, and Japan. In addition, our faculty traveled to give lectures, engage in research collaborations, and participate in meetings in these countries as well as in Italy, UK, Sweden, Belgium, USA, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Brazil, and the Congo.
- We attracted international students to study in the School of Rehabilitation Therapy from India, Bangladesh, Ghana, Nigeria, and Saudi Arabia.
- We sent OT and PT students to Tanzania, India, Australia, Germany, Costa Rica, Malta, Hong Kong, and Belize for clinical placement experiences.