Do you know a child who struggles with sensory difficulties? Perhaps her clothes don’t “feel” right,. Or, do you have a neighbor who has extreme anxiety when there’s a sudden, loud noise? If you see this happening when others don’t, that means you understand sensory processing challenges are very real and very life-altering. Thanks to a 2-year occupational therapy assistant (OTA) program, you can earn an OTA degree and begin helping people of all ages meet all kinds of life-affecting challenges.
OTAs work directly with people who struggle with developmental, emotional, mental, and cognitive disorders and conditions. Occupational therapy assistants (OTAs) team up with occupational therapists (OTs). The team’s job is to find methods and therapies to make life more fulfilling for clients of all ages.
However, a sensory processing disorder is one of the conditions OTAs encounter that can be difficult to recognize. Behaviors may actually be masking the problem.
To counter sensory processing issues, you might find OTAs introducing activities that involve trampolines, swings, or rocking toys. Occupational therapies exist to tackle tactile defensiveness and many other sensory processing challenges that are interfering with age-appropriate activities.
Earning an OTA degree is achieved through classes, labs, and hands-on skill instruction, all designed to give you the ability to help people reach their personal goals through individualized instruction and methods.
Working OTAs say it’s extremely rewarding to work one-on-one with clients. They get a deep satisfaction when they see their clients reach new skill levels and overcome difficulties they have little control over.
As you can imagine, OTAs feel a special calling to help anyone struggling to lead their best possible life.
Occupational therapy assistants learn how to help clients do things like
Discover more about what OTAs do in this blog.
Not everyone has the aptitude to become an OTA, but you probably do. You’ve already read this far.
As you think about entering an OTA degree program, ask yourself some questions:
Saying “yes” to any one of those questions says you’re a good candidate for an occupational therapy assistant education. Sure, you have more questions, and that’s perfectly normal. What is for sure is that becoming an OTA leads you into one of the top healthcare-related roles available.
The 2021 U.S. News annual survey puts OTAs in the top 15 among health care support roles. The OTA career ranks high because of its mix of salary, upward mobility, job satisfaction, and work-life balance.
Among healthcare roles requiring a two-year associate degree, OTA graduates do very well. A typical starting salary for an OTA is from $43,000 to $46,000 yearly. That can be as much as 30% higher than many other degrees requiring a two-years of college according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Over the next decade, the projected growth for OTAs is 36%.
Another advantage of earning the occupational therapy assistant degree is that it offers various work settings. You could be working in a medical clinic, hospital, outpatient center, or school.
Sophie Y., who earned her occupational therapy assistant degree in 2020, says having a direct, positive interaction with people is a big reason she chose to enroll in a 2-year occupational therapy degree program.
“The occupational therapy environment is a loving and warm environment,” she says. “We treat the whole person, and it’s a great world to be in.”
Explore Cleveland University-Kansas City (CUKC) to learn more about the Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) in Occupational Therapy Assistant degree program. CUKC is a private, nonprofit, chiropractic and health sciences university. Our spacious campus is in Overland Park, Kan., a highly rated suburb of the Kansas City metro.
The CUKC 2-year OTA program includes 16 core courses integrated with the 16 weeks of client interaction fieldwork required by the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA). In addition, our OTA program is accredited by the American Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE).
Another advantage of earning the occupational therapy assistant degree at CUKC is not waiting long to begin your OTA career. CUKC offers three start dates during the year: summer, spring, and fall.
Eager to know more about the OTA degree? Get in contact with an admissions advisor here to get this FREE eBook: Your Complete Guide to an Occupational Therapy Assistant Career.