Student Occupational Therapy Association Update
CBD College Congratulates SOTA On Their Inaugural Chapter!
The Occupational Therapy Assistant program has inaugurated CBD’s first Student Occupational Therapy Association (SOTA). The SOTA board is comprised of senior (Cohort 5) and junior (Cohort 6) OTA students. Elected officers are as follows; Sherry Younesi, President John LoMonaco, Vice President Veronica Ochoa, Treasurer Patrice Alexander, Secretary Kyle Kiriyama and Bianca Nguyen, Liaisons Korrina Fite and Ray Luna, Activity Directors. The inaugural SOTA board officers were eager to launch their student association once their new module started. Throughout the fall and winter months, SOTA has been active in organizing events and introducing the chapter.
SOTA kicked off by launching a fundraiser called “OT Tuesdays” in November 2017. Every Tuesday morning students can grab a hot beverage and tasty snack before heading to class. The thought of the fundraiser came about as a way to contribute to charity within the community. The initial proceeds raised in the fall and winter went to SOTA’s participation in the Alexandria House Holiday Toy Drive. SOTA also focuses on giving back to the vets, a population dear within the OT world. A portion of the proceeds from OT Tuesday from now until April will be donated to the Disabled American Vets (DAV). SOTA has seen this weekly event is a great way to mingle with other students and faculty in the school. Futhermore, the officers of SOTA really appreciate the support from fellow CBD students!
Student Advocates for the Field
Additionally, SOTA serves as a liaison between fellow OTA students and the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) by relaying important issues pertaining to the practice of Occupational Therapy. Currently, SOTA focuses on advocating for the recent call to action from the state reps in regards to the therapy cap. Occupational therapy practitioners advocate for clients and to protect the future of the OT practice.
In an effort to bring the students in the OTA program together, SOTA held their first social event during the last week of classes before Christmas break. The Holiday Pizza Party was an event planned for all cohorts in the OTA program. The idea was to welcome the newest OTA cohort 7 allowing them the chance to mingle with fellow classmates across all cohorts 5 and 6, and to bring all students together. The SOTA board received great feedback from several students. Students shared their experiences in previous classes and helpful study tips with one another.
Giving Back to the Community
SOTA celebrates a success in their contribution to CBD’s annual toy drive for Alexandria House. Through the OT Tuesday fundraising, SOTA was able to donate over $150 worth of toys. The SOTA board officers and their board advisor/professor Dr. Natalie Ang, personally delivered the toys to Alexandria House. The Student Occupational Therapy Association hopes to continue building the relationship with the women and children of Alexandria house to bring more awareness to their cause. SOTA is currently planning upcoming professional events and volunteer opportunities within the community for students to participate. The group also looks forward to an array of exciting activities and events soon to come as we celebrate and promote OT month this coming April.
Contributed by OTA Student and SOTA member, Patrice Alexander