Now Open for Registration! Integrating Yoga, Tai Chi, & Feldenkrais with OT Practices Workshop

As the second event of our Department’s 75th anniversary celebrations, we’re pleased to host:

Integrating Yoga, Tai Chi, and Feldenkrais with OT Practices
How Eastern and Western traditions can be integrated into occupational therapy practice to promote occupational performance throughout the continuum of care.
Presented by alumnus Richard Sabel, MA ’97, MPH, OTR, GCFP and Bill Gallagher, PT, CMY, CYT

Event Details
Date: Saturday, November 14, 2015
Time: 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Location: NYU Kimmel Center, Room 905/907
Address: 60 Washington Square South, New York, NY 10012
Registration Cost: $125 Non-Affiliated Professionals, $100 NYU Affiliated Professionals (Alumni, Faculty, and Staff), $30 Current NYU Students

For more information please visit:

Register Online Here

This event is limited to 50 participants and 3.75 contact hours are available upon completion.

An Interview with OT Blogger Sarah Lyon (’11)

Sarah Lyon

Sarah Lyon is the founder of the well-known OT blog, Potential, and she also writes as the OT expert for In an interview with SpOTlight, Lyon talks about her work with Potential, her time at NYU, and life after graduation.

Where did you get the idea for Potential?
Right after I graduated from NYU, I moved back to Nebraska­– my home state­–and started work at a hospital in a small town. Like NYU had taught me, I sought out a place of employment with a good mentor, and for the first couple months had the opportunity to work alongside an OT that I respected. But due to life circumstances, she had to leave the practice after a couple months. So all of a sudden, I was working by myself in an isolated area. Like any good millennial, I took to the Internet for resources to help me with my practice and simply could not find the information I wanted. Even the AOTA website was an older version and was really hard to access.

I saw a big gap in accessible information for OTs. So I started blogging in 2012. It was something I did in my spare time, off and on, for a couple of years. Then about a year ago, I moved to Chicago and while I was waiting for my license to get approved by the state, I started blogging more regularly and my numbers started ticking up. This made me feel like the information I was sharing was meeting a need. I’ve been blogging regularly ever since.

So, is this your full-time job?
I tell people it’s a part-time job– the hours vary from week to week. I’m not in clinical practice right now, because I’ve been able to generate enough income to make things work and I really enjoy the blogging process.

Is this something you ever saw yourself doing for a living while you were in school?
When I was in school, I was passionate about patient education. I was fascinated by the growing number of avenues for patients to learn about their condition and their treatment options. So I had a passion for sharing quality information, but didn’t know what a good outlet for that would be. I definitely didn’t anticipate myself writing this much.

You’re still young for having been practicing and now starting your own blog. Even with the experience you have, do you think your age has played a role in how people view you as an OT?
Sometimes I wonder if being a younger OT hurts my legitimacy. I certainly haven’t experienced everything. But, at the end of the day, there seems to be a need for quality information, and as long as the writing is solid and the piece is thoughtful and truthful, people seem to be open to hearing from a younger voice.

What do you hope for Potential in the next five years?
One opportunity that I’m particularly excited about is a new section called Rehab Share, which is place on my site where practitioners can post items they’ve created for their practice – anything from daily documentation forms to e-books. An online marketplace like this would have been especially helpful when I began working by myself in a small-town general hospital. I was generating so many items from scratch. It was frustrating because I knew there were OTs around the country who generated similar forms and policies already, but I didn’t know how to access them. I’m hoping that this new marketplace will be a helpful resource for OTs and that it will continue to grow.

What drew you to NYU’s OT program?
During my senior year at St. Olaf College, I decided last minute that I wanted to be an occupational therapist. At the time, I had it in my mind that there were good OT programs and not-so-good OT programs. I definitely wanted to go to a good one, so I looked up the top-10 OT programs and chose to apply to schools in cities where I knew people.

I’m thankful for the education I received at NYU. The quality of the education has given me a lot of confidence in my OT practice. Also, as I’ve begun writing about OT, the network at NYU has been invaluable. Five years out, my classmates are still my first phone call when I have a question.

What has your relationship with your fellow NYU alumni been like?
It’s been fun reconnecting with some of my classmates through the blog. I’ve had the opportunity to interview several of them. It has been fun to see the different routes people have taken. I’ve been really inspired at the success so many of my classmates have had early in their careers – from leading departments to opening their own businesses. I’ve seen a trend of my classmates really excelling.

After having been out of practicing OT for a while now, do you want to go back to it at some point?
Absolutely. Even if I decide to keep focusing on writing about OT, I know I need to experience OT on the ground. I also miss the interactions with patients and would love to at least pick up 1-2 shifts per week. But, for now, I have a toddler and am enjoying spending time with him.

What’s your favorite part about what you do?
One of my favorites is responding to peoples’ comments and interacting with people on social media.  The other highlight is simply putting out good information about OT that’s engaging and easy to read. Writing for consumers is a particularly fun challenge because I have to push myself to describe occupational therapy without all of the industry lingo that we we’ve become entrenched in.

NYU OT’s 75th Anniversary Distinguished Alumni Panel

On Friday, October 2, NYU OT welcomed back six distinguished alumni to share their academic and professional experiences with current OT students. The inaugural event got the Department’s 75th anniversary celebrations off to a fantastic start. It provided a great opportunity for alumni to reconnect with the NYU community and interact with current students to share experiences and advice.

The event included remarks from six distinguished alumni, each with their own story behind their success within the field and how they got to where they are now.
The six speakers were:
Anitta B. Fox (’45, ’47): Among the first students at NYU to earn a degree from the Occupational Therapy program
Joan L. Sullivan (’70, ’75): Certified Hand Therapist; Owner of Private Hand Therapy Practice
Danielle N. Butin (’85): Founder and Executive Director of the Afya Foundation; Adjunct Professor at Columbia University
Glen Gillen (’89): Full-time faculty member in the OT program at Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons
Suzanne Sanchez (’96): Senior Director of Therapy Services at the New York City Department of Education
Margaret Swarbrick (’96, ’05): Associate Professor at Rutgers University and the Director of the Wellness Institute at Collaborative Support Programs of New Jersey

Click here to learn more about the speakers. Thanks to our alumni for coming back to visit!

NBCOT Therapy Ed Test Prep Course

The NYU Department of Occupational Therapy is pleased to announce that it will once again be hosting its Annual January NBCOT Exam Prep course offered by Therapy Ed. The two-day course will be held at the University on Wednesday, January 20th and Thursday, January 21st, 2016. NYU OT students are eligible for a $30 course tuition discount. To register, please follow the instructions on the NYU OT registration form.

Please visit for additional course information.

Occupational Therapy Department Study Finds Writing Workshop Gives Seniors a Sense of Purpose unique program combining a life review writing workshop with conversations between seniors and college students enhances the sense of meaning in life for older adults living independently, finds a new study by the Steinhardt School. The study is published in the July/August issue of the American Journal of Occupational Therapy.

Read full article

AT&T and NYU Announce Winners of $100,000 Connect Ability Tech Challenge

Tech ChallengeAt an event marking the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Senator Charles Schumer joined AT&T and NYU’s ABILITY Lab to announce more than $100,000 in prizes awarded to developers of high-tech solutions to improve the lives of people living with disabilities.

A panel of experts, which included Occupational Therapy’s own Anita Perr, judged the competition and awarded $100,000 in prize money that was made available by AT&T and the Rehabilitation Engineering & Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA).

Read full article

NYU at the 2015 AOTA Conference

The 95th Annual AOTA Conference and Expo was held April 16-19, 2015, in Nashville, Tennessee. The conference celebrated its 50th anniversary with the theme, “Giving Voice to the Distinct Value of Occupational Therapy.”

For the first time, the department had an exhibition booth to promote our post-professional programs (MA, DPS, and PhD). Prospective students had the opportunity to meet with and speak to our associate director of enrollment, various faculty, and our fieldwork administrator coordinator. The interaction between prospective students and our representatives was vital for them to learn about the NYU post-professional occupational therapy programs.

The department was also excited to hold its annual alumni dessert reception during the conference. The event, which was held Friday, April 17 at the Omni Nashville Hotel, welcomed alumni, faculty, and students of the department.

Scroll through our slideshow of photos from our exhibition booth and reception below!

The Department extends its congratulations to the many NYU Steinhardt OT faculty, students, and alumni who took part in the annual conference.

The NYU Steinhardt OT faculty participated at the conference through the following lectures and presentations:

Professor Jim Hinojosa and Associate Professor Tsu-Hsin Howe

  • “ePortfolios: The Way of the Future for Self-Assessing and Documenting Competence”

Associate Professor and Department Chair Kristie Patten Koenig

  • “Development of a Middle School Independence Curriculum: An Occupational-Based Program for Children and Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)” with Dora Onwumere, MS, OTR/L; Lauren Harris; and Steven Seidman, OTR/L, all of New York City Department of Education, Brooklyn, NY

Associate Professor Yael Goverover

  • “Performance-Based Assessment for Adults with Cognitive Impairments: Research Findings and Practice Implications” with Mary Radomski, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, Courage Kenny Research Center, Minneapolis, MN; Leslie Davidson, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, Shenandoah University, Winchester, VA; Deirdre Dawson,PhD, OT Reg (Ont.), University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada; Laurel Smith, MS, OTR/L, United States Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine, Natick, MA; and Timothy Wolf, OTD, OTR/L, Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis, MO

Associate Professor Tracy Chippendale

  • “Perceived Neighborhood Fall Risks and Strategies Used to Prevent Outdoor Falls: Does Age Matter?” with contributing author Marie Boltz, PhD, RN, GNP-BC


NYU Steinhardt OT adjunct faculty and current students participated at the conference through the following lectures and presentations:

Adjunct Professor Patricia A. Gentile

  • “Occupational Therapy Leadership in Designing and Implementing Injury Prevention Programs in Level I Trauma Centers” with contributing author, Mark A. Dekki, MPA. Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, Jamaica, NY

Ph.D. candidate Grace Kim

  • “Comprehensive Behavioral Intervention for Tics: An Interdisciplinary Pediatric Program for Service and Research” with Jan Rowe, DrOT, OTR/L, FAOTA, Children’s of Alabama, Wilsonville, AL; Deek Cunningham, MS, OTR/L, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL; Karmen Fischbach, MS, OTR/L, Jefferson County Board of Education, Birmingham, AL; Shannon Bennett, PhD; Lisa Rivera, MS, OTR/L, all of Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, NY


We would also like to recognize the participation of the following alumni:

Gary Bedell ‘86, ‘98
Lisa Davis ‘80
Diane Powers Dirette ‘97
Nancy Finkelstein-Kline ‘98
Glen Gillen ‘89
Sharon Gutman ‘97
Neil Harvison ‘04
Laurie Knis-Matthews ‘05
Fengyi Kuo ‘98
Ai Lian Lim ‘09
Supawadee Lee ‘02
Marianne Mortera ‘04
Alisha Ohl ‘12
Laurette Olson ‘02
Meira L. Orentlicher ‘08
David Pallister ‘95
Christine Peters ‘06
Mara Podvey ‘09
Christine Rotko ‘73
Joyce Sabari ‘92
Sarah A. Schoen ‘01
Steven Seidman ‘94
Francine M. Seruya ‘09
Chinyu Wu ‘95

If there are any names that have been left out erroneously, please let us know, so we can include them here.

Dr. Tsu-Hsin Howe Appointed Director of Post Professional Program

In January 2015, Dr. Tsu-Hsin Howe was named Director of the Post-Professional Programs, where she joins Dr. Sally Poole, director of the Professional Program and Dr. Kristie Patten Koenig, department chair as part of the academic leadership team. Dr. Howe has been with the department as a faculty member since Fall 2007, and has since established an active research agenda. Her research focuses on examining motor behaviors in children who are at high-risk for developmental delay.

She was recently awarded a University Challenge Grant to work with faculty from NYU Polytechnic to develop and calibrate a sensor mat in order to assess infants’ postural development sequence based on the characteristics of their pressure distributions in prone positions. This research will eventually produce information for use within special populations including children with Erb’s palsy, Cerebral Palsy, Torticollis, developmental disabilities and prematurity. Dr. Howe also has ongoing research collaborations with Mount Sinai Medical Center studying feeding outcomes of preterm infants beyond the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) environment. The focus is to investigate the potential feeding issues preterm infants might have after discharged from the NICU and the possible effects on parental stress. Finally, Dr. Howe collaborates with Dr. Tien-Ni Wang, an assistant professor at National Taiwan University and alumnus of the PhD program in Occupational Therapy Research, to develop a digitized handwriting outcome measure for Chinese characters that assesses handwriting legibility and kinematic characteristics.

Dr. Howe received a BS in occupational therapy from National Taiwan University, and both an MA and PhD in occupational therapy from NYU’s Department of Occupational Therapy. She practiced in both community and hospital-based settings for more than 20 years, including 15 as a pediatric clinical specialist in Mount Sinai Medical Center of New York City before coming back to her alma mater. At NYU, she teaches classes on pediatric and research topics at both the master’s and doctoral levels. She is trained in neuro-developmental treatment in pediatrics and is certified to administer the Neonatal Oral Motor Assessment Scale.