Sure, there are many reasons Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) is a great healthcare profession for men. Here’s a quick recap of the top five: 1. It’s a fulfilling profession 2. It’s a team game, 3. Male OTAs can relate well to men’s condition. 4. It’s a role that pays well. 5. It takes about two years to complete.
Before unpacking those, you really ought to have a clear understanding of what an occupational therapy assistant degree delivers.
Male OTAs like Taylor Graff and Bamlaku Kebede will tell you the highly practical aspects of the job, plus the ability to make a difference in people’s lives, make a great career combination.
“I liked that it’s a two-year program and then get straight into work,” Bam says. “If you want a higher degree after that, you can.
1. The OTA career is personally and professionally fulfilling
At its most basic level, Occupational therapy (OT) professionals understand the complex relationship between the client, the desired activity, and the environment in which the activity takes place. People are at their best when they’re able to reach their personal goals.
Remember, the OT profession is distinct from physical therapy. Think of it this way: physical therapy helps people overcome pain, increase their range of motion, and regain physical functions.
Occupational therapy looks at a client’s condition from various perspectives and considers how clients can perform daily living activities that are important to them.
“In my clinical settings, the amount of gratitude people express to us therapists is pretty satisfying,” says Taylor G., who earned his occupational therapy assistant degree in 2019. “If you find pleasure in helping improve people’s lives, this career is worth looking into.”
2. Love being part of a team? You’ll love being an OTA
Think of an OT (occupational therapist) and an OTA (those choosing the occupational therapy assistant degree) as having unique roles but working toward the same goal.
An OT develops the treatment plans, often with input from those who’ve earned an occupational therapy assistant degree (OTA). That’s because the OTA learns much about a client’s personal qualities and preferences. With that knowledge, OTAs and OTs can effectively evaluate progress and adjust strategies and tactics as needed.
With an OTA career, you get to see the results of your work nearly every day, earn a salary you can take pride in, and know that it only took two years of specialized college study to get there.
3. Men relate well to men
It’s true that clients appreciate an OTA’s expertise, but sometimes people want the assistance of their gender. Uneasiness or embarrassment can be a barrier to making adequate therapy progress.
Of the more than 44,813 occupational therapy assistants employed in the United States, 82.8% are women. Obviously, there’s plenty of room for men in the profession.
It should also be noted that the occupational therapy assistant role can be more physical than the job title might imply. OTAs are on the move during their client time, setting up equipment or moving or lifting patients so they can engage in therapy activities.
4. OTA Career Offers a Competitive Salary
A U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report shows that a newly certified OTA with a two-year occupational therapy assistant degree can earn $46-$48,000 annually in the Midwest. Nationally, the average salary range for an OTA with several years of experience is $ $57,000 to $64,000.k
Even better, OTAs advance in their field by adding new specialization areas and attending professional training workshops. OTAs who desire leadership roles can become managers in a rehabilitation center or direct a return-to-work program in a corporate setting.
5. The 2-year A.A.S. degree gets the career going.
A unique aspect of becoming an OTA is how it prepares students for a top healthcare support position in two years of college.
The two-year Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree in occupational therapy assistant is comprehensive. It’s a college curriculum with class time, experience in labs, and supervised fieldwork. Each theory, principle, and technique taught builds off the previous one.
Cleveland University-Kansas City (CUKC) is a nonprofit, private, health sciences chiropractic university in Overland Park, Kansas, within the Kansas City metro area.
The A.A.S. in Occupational Therapy Assistant degree at CUKC consists of 15 core courses, which include approximately 4-5 months of fieldwork education.
Our concentrated eight-week courses and full-year schedule immerse you into your subjects and allow for completion of the OTA degree in as little as two years. Our OTA program is accredited by the American Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE).
Ready to take the first steps to becoming an OTA? Connect with an adviser here, and then download the free eBook: Your Complete Guide to an Occupational Therapy Assistant Career.