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Occupational Therapy Scholarships

The academic field of occupational therapy (OT) is a preprofessional course of study that is designed to prepare you for a graduate program. The ideal degree candidate for this type of program will have sufficient quantities of empathy, patience, manual dexterity and physical stamina. Keep reading to find out more about this exciting major and  about the range of occupational therapy scholarships.

Becoming an occupational therapist involves several steps. You'll first need a bachelor's degree. Then you can enroll in a graduate-level (either master's or doctoral) occupational therapy degree program. Upon completing your graduate studies you'll then be eligible to sit for the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy exam. Once you've successfully completed all of these steps you'll be eligible for the title Occupational Therapist Registered (OTR).

At the bachelor's degree level you can choose whatever major you want as long as the curriculum of the major includes the courses you'll need for an OT grad program. Examples of these courses include anatomy and physiology, biology, psychology, ergonomics, mechanical physics, kinesiology and gerontology. 

A partial list of the college majors that work well with this course load include biology, sociology, psychology and liberal arts. There are a growing number of colleges offering a combined bachelor's/master's degree program that will allow you to complete your studies in five years.

Most occupational therapy scholarships pertain to the study of this field at the graduate level. Some of the scholarship opportunities are designed for students specializing in a particular OT concentration such as pediatrics or psychiatric disabilities. If you are looking for scholarships at the undergraduate level you might want to investigate what's available under the category of your major.

The career prospects for occupational therapists are outstanding. Job opportunities are expected to increase at a much faster than average rate over the coming decade. One factor fueling this growth will be an increase in the elderly population. As out nation ages our need for occupational therapy increases.

Follow the links below to explore the range of occupational therapy scholarships. 

AMBUCS Scholarships for Therapists

AMBUCS offers scholarships to students (U.S. citizens) in their junior/senior year in a bachelor's degree, or a graduate program leading to a master's or doctoral degree. Students must be accepted in an accredited program by the appropriate health/therapy profession authority in physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech language pathology, and hearing audiology. Assistant programs are not eligible. Awards are based on financial need, commitment to local community, demonstrated academic accomplishment, character for compassion and integrity, and career objectives.

The Florence Wood Scholarship

Applicants must be currently enrolled and have completed at least 1 year of occupational therapy specific coursework in an AOTA accredited or developing post-professional level program OR enrolled in an occupational therapy assistant program. One scholarship of $500 to an Arkansas resident enrolled in an accredited occupational therapy educational program in Arkansas.

Workforce Shortage Student Assistance Grant (WSSAG) Program

The Workforce Shortage Student Assistance Grant (WSSAG) program is for students who plan on working in specific career/occupational programs upon graduation. Eligible fields include: child care, human services, teaching, nursing, physical and occupational therapy, social work, and public service. Who may apply: Current high school seniors, full-time and part-time, degree-seeking undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in an eligible accredited Maryland postsecondary institution. How to apply: Complete the Workforce Shortage Student Assistance Grant application online at https://mdcaps.mhec.state.md.us and submit official transcripts from all institutions you have ever attended. To be considered based on need, students must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.gov for the application year. The FAFSA is not required; however, it will be used to determine the order in which students will be awarded. Certain majors may require additional documentation, which will be noted on the application. When to apply: File the WSSAG application by July 1 Eligible majors: Eligible majors and employment fields will be determined by an Advisory Council biennially and will address statewide and regional workforce needs. Employment fields may be limited to certain occupational areas within a field. Eligible majors and employment fields (see website). ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS You and your parents (if you are a dependent student) must be Maryland residents. You must enroll at a two-year or four-year Maryland college or university as a full-time (12+ credits per semester) or part-time (6-11 credits per semester) degree seeking undergraduate student, or a full-time (9+ credits per semester) or part-time (6-8 credits per semester) degree seeking graduate student. Audited courses cannot be used to reach the minimum credit hours for full-time or part-time status. NOTE: Individuals who have received scholarships in prior years under MHEC's former career/occupational programs (Child Care Provider; Developmental Disabilities, Mental Health, Child Welfare and Juvenile Justice Workforce Tuition Assistance Program) will continue to receive their awards as long as they remain eligible. Students who receive one of these former awards are not eligible to also receive a WSSAG award. MERIT AND/OR NEED-BASED CRITERIA Both merit and need-based criteria will be used when making awards. Applicants will be ranked by Grade Point Average (GPA) and then by need within each occupational field. Those students with the greatest need within each GPA range will be awarded first. To determine a student’s merit ranking, transcripts will be required. To determine the GPA ranking of students, a cumulative, unweighted GPA will be used. If necessary, GPAs will be recalculated to be considered on a standardized 4.0 scale. To determine a student’s need ranking, a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) must be filed by the applicant and received by OSFA by the July 1 deadline; however, it is not mandatory to file the FAFSA to be eligible to receive an award. AWARD AMOUNT Award amounts are set at the statutory minimum and are based on the type of institution and the student’s enrollment status. The award is $2,000 per year if attending a Maryland community college full-time (12+ credits per semester) or $1,000 per year if part-time (6-11 credits per semester). The award is $4,000 per year if attending a Maryland four-year institution full-time (12+ credits per semester for undergraduate; 9+ credits per semester for graduate) or $2,000 per year if part-time (6-11 credits per semester for undergraduate; 6-8 credits per semester for graduate). The total dollar amount of all State awards may not exceed a student's cost of attendance as determined by the school's financial aid office or $19,000, whichever is less.

Alice Jantzen Memorial Scholarship

QUALIFIED APPLICANTS MUST: Meet all eligibility requirements; For Post-baccalaureate scholarships, this must be the first degree in Occupational Therapy; Have a sustained record of outstanding scholastic achievement; Supply application data including: (1) Two references and (2) Program Director's statement; Applicants for post-baccalaureate scholarships must be enrolled at the professional level (Master's or OTD) in an accredited or developing Occupational Therapy educational program and have completed 1 full year of Occupational Therapy coursework.

AOTF Nebraska Scholarship

Two scholarships of $250 each for Nebraska residents enrolled in an accredited occupational therapy educational program in Nebraska and having completed their junior year. Applicants must be members of the Nebraska Occupational Therapy Association.

AOTF Kansas Scholarship

Scholarships awarded to occupational therapy student and one occupational therapy assistant student within the state of Kansas. Scholarship amount TBD. Applicants must be currently enrolled and have completed at least 1 year of occupational therapy specific coursework in an AOTA accredited or developing post-professional level program OR enrolled in an occupational therapy assistant program.

Mary Eileen Dixey Scholarship

Scholarships awarded to occupational therapy and occupational therapy assistant students in accredited occupational therapy education programs, attending a curriculum in New Hampshire and who are residents of New Hampshire. Please check the website for any changes in the award deadline.

Frank Oppenheimer Scholarship

QUALIFIED APPLICANTS MUST: Meet all eligibility requirements; For Post-baccalaureate scholarships, this must be the first degree in Occupational Therapy; Have a sustained record of outstanding scholastic achievement; Supply application data including: (1) Two references and (2) Program Director's statement; Applicants for post-baccalaureate scholarships must be enrolled at the professional level (Master's or OTD) in an accredited or developing Occupational Therapy educational program and have completed 1 full year of Occupational Therapy coursework.

Willard & Spackman Memorial Scholarship

* For student seeking a post-professional graduate degree; * Must be a member of the American Occupational Therapy Association; * Demonstrate a need for financial assistance; * Have a sustained record of outstanding scholastic achievement; * Must be a full-time student currently enrolled in an accredited or developing occupational therapy educational program. * Must be currently enrolled in a minimum of two courses per semester in an accredited institution of higher education; * Graduate program must require a dissertation, thesis, special project, or research component.

TopMedicalAssistantSchools.com Scholarship Program

Details We will award a $500 scholarship to the applicant chosen. Must be at least 18 years old. Applicant must be currently attending a college or university, or will be attending in the fall. Applicant must have a min. of 3.0 GPA based on the previous school year’s academic performance. Essay For the essay portion of the application, please write an essay on the topic: “Why I want to pursue a career in the medical field.” The essay must be 400 words or more. Be sure to include personal experiences, and your thoughts on the importance of saving money. How to Apply Fill out the scholarship application. Selection The scholarship will be paid directly to the scholarship recipient’s college or university. Privacy TopMedicalAssistantSchools.com will not contact individual applicants unless he/she is the scholarship recipient. Necessary Documents Required of Potential Winners One copy of Official High School or College Transcripts Publicity/Liability Release Copyright Assignment IRS Form W-9 Copy of United States Driver’s License Headshot photograph in high-resolution, digitally as a JPEG or TIFF file Who is eligible to apply? Any student who is currently attending a college or university, or will be attending in the fall. How will the essays be judged? The essays will be reviewed and judged by creativity, specificity, and grammar. We are looking for students who need the extra money to get through college. We understand the financial burden of college. We were students too.

PIF/Lifeline Scholarship Program

Scholarships are available for adult students who are enrolled in one of the following programs: physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech/hearing therapy, mental health, or rehabilitation. Recipients must be preparing for, or already invovled in, careers working with people with disabilities/brain related disorders.

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