BSc Occupational Therapy – Katie’s story | University of East Anglia (UEA)

My name is Katie, I’m a second year
Occupational Therapy student at UEA. I’ve always been passionate about doing
a career that’s based on working with people and actually making a difference
to people’s everyday lives. One of the first placements I did in GCSE
was in primary school teaching, which I loved but I just wanted something a bit more. I looked at about eight different universities to study Occupational Therapy, which is obviously quite a lot for such a specialist degree. UEA was the
last university that I visited and as soon as I came the lecturers were lovely,
the talk about OT completely convinced me… the whole environment – how green
is, it’s gorgeous… You’ve got an art museum – all that culture is here… it’s just a really great place to study.
I was just immediately convinced and knew it was the right place for me. The lecturers are incredibly
supportive they’re always there for you whether that’s on email or just popping
in to their office that are asking them questions about an assignment or group
work or anything like that. The focus again on group work that we do, right from the beginning of first year you’ll thrown into different groups
every week you’re pushed to stand up in front of big classes and make your
point across immediately so just gaining that confidence and having that
confidence to work as part of a group has actually really helps you when
you’re on placement because then you know how to kind of communicate in that
interdisciplinary environment. UEA just gives you all the skills that you need to be a great healthcare professional really. One of the main things that I’m probably most proud of is actually how far I’ve come on the
public speaking front. So obviously I came and I was very shy and I’ve kind of
mumbled my way through things, or I’d just try and not speak at all if I could get away with it, which you normally can’t, but now I’m obviously able to come
across quite well, quite relaxed and I’m really proud of that because you know
we’ve only learning half way through well I’m only half way through my
program so you know from now to when I graduate it might be again another huge
milestone in terms of how well I can come across. One piece of advice I would probably
give prospective OT students would be that if you are wanting to enable people
to live life their way – in a way that’s as independent as it can possibly be –
then occupational therapy is the perfect healthcare profession to do. It’s
getting that right balance between knowing how the body works, knowing how systems work, but actually knowing how people work… and knowing about how to
apply OT theory, which is quite new in the whole scheme of healthcare, but you
know OT theory in applying that to the person and how they can apply it to
their daily activities.

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