Why did you decide to study at Brunel?
I decided to study at Brunel because of the international reputation of the Occupational Therapy programme. I hope to someday be an occupational therapist that specialises in paediatrics, and the Masters in Occupational Therapy course at Brunel provides the opportunity to gain further experience working with children with disabilities. In addition, I was attracted to Brunel’s intensive, two-year programme, which combines classroom and practical experience in an urban environment.
The Occupational Therapy programme at Brunel also relies on practice placements. I am looking forward to participating in such placements, as I believe that hands-on learning will be critical to my education as an occupational therapist. While theory provides an important base, applying what you learn in the classroom to clinical situations is extremely important to the learning process.
In February 2013, I was presented with the opportunity to visit London for a week and attend an interview. During my stay, I toured the Brunel campus and saw the teaching facilities in the Mary Seacole Building. Utilising this venue seemed like an excellent way to learn about how to assist a client to learn a new way to perform an activity, while encouraging independence.
What do you like about studying at Brunel?
I very much enjoy studying at the Brunel campus, as we have access to state-of-the-art facilities and equipment, experienced lecturers and a lot of student support. I have also met some incredible colleagues in my department, and I have very much enjoyed sharing and learning from each other’s past experiences. On a larger scale, studying occupational therapy in the UK has enabled me to compare and contrast the public healthcare systems in both Canada and England, and to discover aspects of practice that could be applicable in Canada. It is my opinion that international study gives students a global perspective on issues in their respective fields. Learning abroad in England has provided me with the opportunity to understand what I am studying in a global context, to understand how occupational therapists function in different settings, and to help contribute my skills in a variety of communities in this increasingly globalized society.
What is your opinion of the university accommodation?
I am not personally staying in university accommodation, I elected to live in central London and commute to Brunel. However, several members of my cohort live in halls at Brunel, and they very much enjoy the facilities and the fact that they can live at such a short distance from their lectures.
What advice would you give to a new student at Brunel?
I would say that if you are new to Brunel, make sure you get involved with activities both within your cohort and the university as a whole. Also, make sure that you give yourself time to adjust to your new environment, choosing to study away from home can be a big change but it will be well worth it. And of course, a good pair of wellies will help you through the winter!
What social activities are you involved in?
While I am not currently involved in any formal clubs or societies at Brunel, we organise social activities through the Occupational Therapy department. One of the recent activities many of us participated in was a trip to the Science Museum as part of their "Lates" events. I was able to spend time with my colleagues away from campus, and explore the Science Museum at night with other young adults.
How do you plan to use your degree in your career?
I hope that my studies in Occupational Therapy at Brunel will enable me to pursue a career where I can help people, more specifically children. During my undergraduate degree, I became interested in how children cope with disabilities, which led me to consider how children could benefit from improvements in motor function early in life - specifically, how this would translate to increased overall function as an adult with a disability. My long-term goal would be to work in a paediatric therapy facility where I could help improve children’s lives through the introduction of occupational therapy.