Fieldwork and Research
Fieldwork complements your learning and is vital to your success as an occupational therapist. That's why we require you to complete fieldwork experiences. At St. Kate's, we divide these into:
- Level I fieldwork, which give you the chance to apply what you've learned in the classroom to a real-world/practice setting.
- Level II fieldwork, which are six-month placements in a variety of medical, educational and community settings so you get to work with people of all ages and abilities.
Our well-connected faculty will help set you up with a fieldwork site in the Twin Cities area — or at almost any other place nationally or internationally. For example, in Latin America, where we have long-standing clinical partnerships with local nonprofits and clinics.
- Each spring, five occupational therapy students join alumna Tamara Kittelson-Aldred '75 in Peru to fit wheelchairs for children with physical disabilities.
“I was blown away by the transformation I saw as the wheelchairs were customized, one by one, to fit each child,” says student Molly Wadsworth, on her first fieldtrip with Eleanore's Project.
- Alumna Katie Strawbridge made custom splints for wrists and hands for children with cerebral palsy at a clinic/elementary school in Ecuador.
Once you've completed your coursework and fieldwork requirements, the National Occupational Therapy Certification Exam is next.
Those who pass the exam receive the title Occupational Therapist Registered (OTR). The initial National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) certificate is valid for three years. Renewal is required to maintain active certification, which demonstrates that you possess the knowledge and skills to continue to practice the profession.
St. Kate's Occupational Science/Occupational Therapy Club provides educational information and career resources, as well as social and fundraising opportunities for all students. Club activities include bake sales, guest speakers and participating in Adopt-A-Family.