The NYU Steinhardt Department of Occupational Therapy is pleased to announce that Jillian Yoo and Michelle Conley are this year’s recipients of the Frieda J. Behlen Occupational Therapy Scholarship. The award recognizes high-achieving students with a demonstrated commitment to contributing to the NYU OT community.
Congratulations to Jillian and Michelle!
Jillian Yoo is passionate about exploring the impact of spiritual engagement on health outcomes. After witnessing the resilience of communities that had previously faced significant trauma while attending the Occupational Therapy Department’s “Global Context” course in Tel Aviv, Israel, Jillian hopes to illuminate how spiritual practices can affect individuals’ routines, self-concepts, and overall well-being. She also participated in Steinhardt’s ASD Nest Program, working alongside educators from the United Arab Emirates and NYU faculty to explore the implications of inclusion for teachers and therapists. Jillian will graduate in 2021 and looks forward to helping individuals heal, recover, and regain their independence by providing compassionate occupational therapy services.
Michelle Conley came to NYU Steinhardt’s MS in Occupational Therapy program with a goal of using her past experience working as a communications professional to promote occupational therapy through advocacy and interdisciplinary collaboration. After attending a workshop on constructing homemade toys for children with disabilities, Michelle developed an interest in creating appealing accessible technologies. She now aspires to be a part of a research team that creates functional yet fashionable clothing and assistive devices for children and adults with disabilities. Michelle will graduate in 2020 and hopes to join an outpatient clinic where she can work with a multidisciplinary team on a range of complex cases.
The Frieda J. Behlen Occupational Therapy Scholarship is an endowed fund created principally by gifts from alumni of NYU’s occupational therapy programs. Income generated by the endowment is awarded annually to second-year Professional Program students who demonstrate superior academic achievement as well as financial need.
The fund was named to honor the memory of Frieda J. Behlen, founder and longtime chair of NYU’s Department of Occupational Therapy. Ms. Behlen was known for her generosity, often opening her own pocketbook to enable deserving students to complete their studies.
The award takes the form of a tuition aid applied toward summer courses. With growth in the fund’s balance from new gifts, the amount distributed continues to increase annually.