By: Lauren Eversole
On Wednesday, March 31, The Occupational Therapy (OT) Expo showcased the work of 28 second year OT students. This event gave students an opportunity to share their equipment, books, techniques, assessment and several other creative projects with the Milligan community, as well as family, friends, and prospective students.
In years past, the expo has been held in the occupational therapy lab; however, this year’s venue, The Gregory Center, allowed more space and provided an aesthetic showcase environment for the expo.. Jennifer Lawson, an OT student and one of three promoters for the event, said that OT faculty and students were excited and blessed to be able to use the Gregory Center this year.
“It allowed for more space and accessibility for guest and the growing number of projects,” said Lawson.
According to the expo’s organizer, Jill Smith, between 200 and 225 people attended the event. The attendees primarily consisted of perspective students, OT students, physical therapists, teachers and Milligan students. Lawson spoke to approximately 20 perspective students at the expo.
Brooke Ingle, a junior, said that she really enjoyed the event.
“It was very informative and helpful. Even students that are not involved in occupational therapy can enjoy this event,” Ingle said.
Junior Josh Hullett said, “I liked being able to see what things the OT students came up with to apply tin their jobs. I was interested in seeing what new ideas had come about in the past year to help people.”
Many Milligan students attended the expo to support their friends.
Senior Amanda Morrell said, “It was fun. I have gone the past couple of years because I have gotten to know many of the OT students and I wanted to support them in their projects.”
This years projects included displays titled, “Tony the Phony Pony,” “I Spy Bags,” “Hospital Bed Rail Covers,” and several others.
All expo projects are donated tothe community. Lyndsay Nauman, whose project was titled “Stamp-tastic,” is donating her project to a kindergarten class.
Nauman’s project was created to help children with poor handwriting resulting from bad grips on their pencil.She came up with a set of stamps with a range of diameters to combat this problem.
“When kids have bad handwriting, the last thing they want to do is work on their handwriting,” said Nauman. “These stamps are to help them practice moving toward a correct pencil grip.”
The child starts with a stamp with a wide diameter handle and gradually moves through the sizes until he or she reaches the correct pencil diameter.
Each OT student was encouraged to create something based on what they are passionate about. The projects ranged from students’ focus within the OT program to personal struggles.
Jillian McLellan’s project dealt with the latter–a personal struggle. From a young age, McLellan has suffered from migraines. She often placed an icepack wrapped in a washcloth on her forehead for relief; however, this method was uncomfortable and messy, according to McLellan. Therefore, she created “The Migraine Manager.”
The migraine manager is a custom-made pillowcase that assists in making migraines more bearable.
“I used the knowledge I had about migraines and created a product that would use ice to alleviate the pain,” said McLellan, ““The pillowcase has a Velcro attachment that is a fabric sleeve for an icepack that covers the back of the head and neck. The migraine manager brings relief without the leaks.”
According to the Expo’s organizer, Jill Smith, Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy, there were estimated between 200 and 225 people that visited the expo. In the past the expo has been held in an occupational therapy lab. But they had to move many tables and chairs out of the room for the event and the white walls didn’t do much to showcase the projects.