Occupational Therapy

Michelle Barr, BS '03, MS '04
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) | Occupational Therapist
Philadelphia, PA

During my fieldwork I observed a wide variety of occupational therapy interventions and gained hands-on experience in the clinics where I now work. I enjoyed seeing the different models of care and roles that OTs could have. As a student you don’t realize all of the things OTs can do. Occupational therapists have so many base skills on which to build — we could go anywhere.

I work one day a week at International Adoption Health Program at CHOP and spend three other ten-hour days working as an OT in other areas at CHOP, including outpatient therapy, acute therapy, and adaptive equipment clinic.

I traveled to Vietnam with Gail Farber, MD, the medical director and founder of the International Adoption Health Program at CHOP. We traveled as part of Project Vietnam, an American Academy of Pediatrics program. During our two-week stay, we visited hospitals and orphanages in Ho Chi Minh City and Ha Noi. I trained therapists and nurses on various therapeutic interventions including splinting and positioning of infants in the NICU and developing home exercise programs for children receiving outpatient therapy.

Jefferson gave me a strong basis of knowledge in many treatment areas, including nontraditional areas such as clinics. Jefferson helps you learn to think beyond traditional OT roles, to be open to new opportunities, and to get involved in innovative areas.