Category: Outreach

Pathway to Occupational Therapy School: Former KIP Student Alexa Destrampe’s Story

My name is Alexa and I am currently an Occupational Therapy student at Concordia University Wisconsin.

As an undergraduate student at Michigan Tech, I studied Exercise Science and also earned a minor in Psychology. As a pre-Occupational Therapy student at MTU, I was able to learn about the human body from many different perspectives. In addition to kinesiology and psychology classes, I also took courses in biology, biochemistry, anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, nutrition, neuroscience, epidemiology, neurology, mindfulness & meditation, psychopathology, & archaeology. Every course I took at Michigan Tech helped me become the occupational therapy student I am today, as OT is a holistic medical profession that highlights all branches of human health. That said, having a focus on movement science was especially helpful when learning the basics of the human body.

I chose occupational therapy as my future profession because it combines science and creativity effortlessly. For example, if two different clients came to see me for carpal tunnel treatment, their treatment plans would look very different from each other, even with the same diagnoses. Each patient requires treatment based on their unique occupations; things you need, want, and are expected to do in society. I was drawn to the vastness of opportunity that this career holds. I will never be bored and will always be helping others live their life to the fullest as an occupational therapist. Additionally, being an occupational therapist will require action through advocacy. Advocating for the profession as a whole, future clients, populations, as well as myself is something I am passionate about. 

I went into my first semester at MTU nervous to get involved but quickly shed that fear. While I was at Tech I spent a lot of my time in the athletic training room, in the sleep research lab, and out in the campus & local communities promoting healthy habits & lifestyle changes. I invested time into experiences that I was passionate about. Through these experiences, I gained confidence in professional and medical language, developed interpersonal skills, and sharpened my analytical skills. 

None of this would have been possible if I did not network with my professors, academic advisors, and mentors. The people at Michigan Tech are what sets my experience apart from what “could have been”. I truly don’t think I would have had the opportunities I did at MTU had I went elsewhere. The class sizes are small, the librarians and tutors are helpful, and the community that Michigan Tech creates is a safe one. 

I applied to Concordia University – Wisconsin’s program right on time. CUW’s OT program was one of the only post-baccalaureate programs in the country to have a January start. I just so happened to graduate in December and knew if I had the choice, I wanted to head right to OT school. If I hadn’t been accepted, I would have applied to other schools and took the next few months to take a breather. But, it was fate, so I packed my bags and headed South to Milwaukee! Concordia’s OT program is a great fit and the view of Lake Michigan even reminds me of home. 

My number one piece of advice is to take initiative when planning for your desired successes. When applying to OT school you should stay organized and be intentional about the choices you make starting your very first semester of undergrad. Talk to your pre-health advisor to plan both your academics and extracurriculars. I would also highly suggest shadowing practicing occupational therapists throughout your undergraduate career. This helped me directly learn about OT and stay excited about my future even when I was overwhelmed with the common stresses of school. 

COVID-19 Town Hall Thursday, August 26: Dealing with the Delta Variant

Join us Thursday from 7:00-8:00pm ET for the COVID-19 Community Town Hall. Organized by the Health Research Institute at Michigan Technological University, the 60-minute Town Hall broadcast can be heard live at 7:00pm ET on 97.7 The Wolf (WOLV-FM) and 99.1 (WIKB-FM) and viewed through a Zoom Webinar and Facebook Live. The Town Hall can also be viewed on ABC 10 Sunday at 12:00pm EST. Town Hall moderators Steve Elmer and Kelly Kamm (KIP/HRI) will discuss a range of pandemic-related issues (vaccines, community transmission, mental health and well-being, and more). More information along with the Zoom link for the Town Hall can be found on the Health Research Institute’s COVID-19 Town Hall Series webpage.

COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics at MTU

With the beginning of the Fall semester around the corner, Michigan Tech in partnership with the Upper Great Lakes Family Health Center will be holding walk-in COVID-19 vaccine clinics on campus. These clinics are open to all students, faculty, and staff.

The dates are August 24 during Orientation Week, and then September 1 and September 2 at the Rozsa Center Lobby from 3 to 5 pm. No appointment is required.

Please visit MTU Flex’s website for more information about the upcoming clinics and for additional information on quarantine guidelines and COVID-19 vaccination.

Gain Experience through the Athletic Training Student Aid Program

For those interested in Athletic Training, there is a great opportunity to gain some experience at Michigan Tech!

The Athletic Training Student Aid Program gives students the opportunity to work under an athletic trainer to acquire knowledge and skills related to the domains of athletic training, which can be valuable to all healthcare professions. Areas of opportunity in the ATSA Program include assisting in practice and game coverage, observing orthopedic injury assessments, and potential travel to MTU away games.

Please find the ATSA Program’s flyer and visit the program’s website for more information.

Applications for the CMU DPT program are Open for Michigan Tech Students

If you are thinking about or are preparing to apply to doctorate in physical therapy programs, Michigan Tech University’s partnership with Central Michigan University’s DPT program is a fantastic option. Information on the program, requirements, and how to apply can be found in the flyer below. Also, find KIP’s website for even more information on this program.

UP Health Science and Medicine Lecture Series featured in the News

The June edition of the UP Health Science and Medicine Lecture Series was highlighted by the Daily Mining Gazette and the Mining Journal.

Supported by Michigan Tech’s Department of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology and Health Research Institute, the summer lecture featured Dr. Robert Sallis and his study published by the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

To watch the lecture series, find it on the Health Research Institute’s YouTube channel. Or read about the highlights on the Daily Mining Gazette’s or the Mining Journal’s website.

Students and Faculty Participate in the Michigan Physiological Society Meeting

Students and faculty from the Department of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology and Department of Biological Sciences recently participated in the 8th annual Michigan Physiological Society (MPS) Meeting held virtually on June 24-25, 2021. Graduate students Jessica Bruning (KIP), Xingqian Chen (KIP), Carmen Scarfone (KIP), Aditi Vyas (BIO), Manas Warke (BIO), and Isaac Wedig (KIP) presented their research, teaching, and outreach focused projects. 

Dr. Steven Elmer (KIP) co-organized the featured symposium titled “Research and Teaching during COVID-19: Challenges, Opportunities, and Lessons Learned” and received help from Greg Miodonski (KIP) and Carmen Scarfone (KIP) who served as moderators for two oral presentations. Anatomy and Physiology Instructor, Travis Wakeham (BIO), also presented during this session and the Michigan Tech “UP and Moving” Team helped to break up the sitting time by leading the audience through a movement activity.  

All students did a great job with their presentations including Isaac Wedig who earned a student award for one of the top oral presentations. Finally, Dr. Elmer was elected as the next MPS President-Elect and will serve on the executive leadership committee for the next three years. 

UP and Moving featured on Portage Health Foundation Podcast

Dr. Steve Elmer and PhD student Isaac Wedig were featured on the most recent episode of the Portage Health Foundation Podcast. They talked about how the threat of COVID-19 created the UP and Moving project, which has reached a milestone 100th workout. UP and Moving provides free live and recorded home-based workouts that can be found on its website, YouTube, and Facebook. They also discussed a study done by Dr. Robert Sallis, who was the speaker for the most recent edition of the UP Health Science and Medicine Lecture Series, and the impact that physical activity has on COVID-19 outcomes for infected adults. For Dr. Elmer and Isaac, the goal was simple: get adults in the Upper Peninsula physically active to positively impact their health not only during the pandemic but beyond it.

Dr. Elmer has received a $100,000 Community Health Impact Grant from the Michigan Health Endowment Fund to continue with a one-year project titled “Keep the Western UP Moving during COVID-19 with Exercise is Medicine.”

If you would like to listen to the podcast in its entirety, click here for the PHF Podcast. To learn more about UP and Moving or to begin a workout routine with the project, click here for the UP and Moving website. 

Michigan Physiology Society Annual Meeting

Drs. Steve Elmer and John Durocher will be the session chairs for the Featured Symposium, “Research and Teaching during COVID-19: Challenges, Opportunities, and Lessons Learned”, at the Annual APS Michigan Physiology Society meeting this Thursday, June 24th from 2-4pm.

APS-MPS

There is no need to register for the event – it is free to all MPS members and conference presenters; a Zoom Link will be shared with the membership and participants.