On Saturday, May 20, graduates of the post-professional Doctor of Occupational Therapy program were recognized at a private reception in the Watergate facility and at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences graduation ceremony which was followed by a reception. The GW Commencement on Sunday, May 21 took place on the National Mall.
New graduate, Karen Ruiz, reflected on making the most of her time in the program, as she stated, “I was able to collaborate so strongly with my professors and I'm so lucky to have Dr. Doerrer, Dr. Ideishi, and Dr. Mallinson, who I worked with very closely. They helped me to refine my research and think outside of the box. Now, I'm always wondering how I can improve all organizations that I'm a part of, [such as], the culture, risks and benefits of programs, and innovations.”
At the Commencement ceremony, Bryan Stevenson, a renowned social justice lawyer and advocate, headlined and urged graduates to do the uncomfortable things, reflecting similar themes that are weaved throughout the occupational therapy program and curriculum.
Alumni and assistant professor, Kellie Sawyer, OTD, OTR/L, advised students to “take this time to really celebrate your accomplishments and be in the moment. There’s a lot of different emotions… but I encourage you to always land with trust and optimism. Trust the process and the tools that you’ve gained through this program, knowing that you have what you need to be successful.”
The Class of 2023 pOTD graduates include: Selina Brijbasi, Sydney Greenspan, and Karen Ruiz.