Meet Our OTD Students



Meet Our OTD Students

Students in the St. Catherine University OTD program are experienced occupational therapists seeking to advance to the highest level of professional practice.  

How do St. Kate's OTD students apply their learning?  Because of the unique nature of the program — with options to specialize in the area of practice of your choice, rather than a predetermined track — the opportunities to apply your learning in different ways are nearly endless.

Below are the stories of just a few of our OTD students.  What will your story be?

MIRIAM MONAHAN is an occupational therapist and certified driver rehabilitation specialist. She consults with universities in driving research, working to establish a bridge between research and clinical practice. She is a nationally recognized lecturer and published author on driving and community mobility for adolescents with special needs. Monahan is the founder of a nonprofit for the promotion of occupational therapy in driver rehabilitation through education and mentorship. She is also an entrepreneur who develops driver rehabilitation training tools.

"I chose St. Catherine University for my doctorate because of the caliber of the faculty and the broad scope of their interests and achievements. At. St. Catherine University I am able to tailor assigned projects to my professional goals while receiving expert guidance from my professor, faculty adviser, selected mentors and fellow students. The projects have had direct translation to my current work and long term professional goals. I have been a practitioner for nearly 20 years and I find each course generates new concepts, perspectives and values within occupational therapy. Although the OTD program is offered through distance learning, the orientation on campus, online discussions and chats fosters a strong sense of community among students and faculty.

LINDSAY BUDDELMEYER'S OTD work involves implementing an evidence-based program for caregivers of individuals living with Alzheimer's in Ohio.  She is an instructor of occupational therapy at the University of Findlay. Her clinical practice experience includes acute care, outpatient, home health, and rehabilitation with adult and geriatric populations. Buddelmeyer has presented at professional conferences and community agencies, such as the Council on Aging and the Alzheimer's Association, to educate others on occupational therapy services for patients and families facing this disease.

"I presented at the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) annual conference this spring on helping our profession reach the centennial vision. This happened because of the work that I am doing with the Alzheimer’s disease community — I am on a panel of OT professionals, each representing an area/population of practice, and I will be representing the geriatric population.  This project has evolved through the learning and work that I have been able to do through St. Catherine University."

ASHLEA CARDIN is an AOTA Board Certified Pediatric Occupational Therapist at Mercy Children's Hospital in Springfield, Missouri. One year after she began her studies in the St. Kate's OTD, Cardin accepted a position as assistant professor of occupational therapy at Missouri State University.  Her research and practice interests focus on neonatal intensive care and empowering parents.

JANET O'FLYNN is a pediatric occupational therapist with the Madison-Oneida Board of Cooperative Educational Services, offering OT services in K-12 public schools in upstate New York. She has taught a graduate course for special education teachers at Syracuse University. Her volunteer experience has taken her to international locations such as Guyana, Peru and Haiti. In her OTD work, O'Flynn is currently networking internationally to facilitate the launch of the first academic OT and PT four-year degree programs in Haiti.

“St. Catherine University has given me the practical tools to approach a complex project.  St. Kate’s has also introduced me to key leaders in the field of cross-cultural OT who have immediately understood the potential for errors and the opportunities involved in working with international partnerships.  I am working hard in this OTD program — but I am also working much more effectively on my chosen project because of St. Kate’s.”