Thursday, January 28, 2016

Learn About Yourself

After attending the weekly department meetings, I'm quickly learning there are very different personalities and ways of communicating. And I'm also learning that not everyone is on the same page when it comes to educating students (for example, the students are so confused on how to write goals because they've been taught eight million different ways to write them--I totally understand their frustrations) which can be problematic at times. All of this made me think about my learning styles and strengths which we talked about in school but there's no way I'll find that info buried in my laptop so I decided to dig it up and see how I can better fit myself into the puzzle that is my ProRo.

To start, I am a multi-modal learner, which means I learn in multiple ways. If you're unsure on what type of learner you are, check out this quick quiz. Specifically, I learn best when information is presented visually, auditorally [not sure that's a real word but go with it], and physically (aka tactile/kinesthetic). This also means that info can be presented to me in many ways and I can still learn from it, which may be the same for most people. Some other info I found discussed which parts of the brain are used with each learning style. Based on my learning style, I use my occipital and temporal lobes, cerebellum, and motor cortex to recall info, and it's all thanks to brain-imaging technology. Kinda cool right?

Something I completed in undergrad and again in OT school was the StrengthsFinder Profile. Technically I did the StrengthsQuest Profile, but my results didn't change. My top strengths are (in exact order): Developer, Adaptability, Positivity, Empathy, and Includer. What does all this mean?

People especially talented in the Developer theme recognize and cultivate the potential in others. They spot the signs of each small improvement and derive satisfaction from these improvements.

People especially talented in the Adaptability theme prefer to “go with the flow.” They tend to be “now” people who take things as they come and discover the future one day at a time.

People especially talented in the Positivity theme have an enthusiasm that is contagious. They are upbeat and can get others excited about what they are going to do.

People especially talented in the Empathy theme can sense the feelings of other people by imagining themselves in others’ lives or others’ situations.

People especially talented in the Includer theme are accepting of others. They show awareness of those who feel left out, and make an effort to include them.

I think those strengths describe me...what do you think?

One other thing we did during undergrad (which I'm sure you've heard of) is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator which you can take an easy, free version here. There are 16 different types out there, and sometimes you can fall into multiple types, as there's always gray areas in life. For me, I have an ISFJ personality [meaning Introversion, Sensing, Feeling, and Judging] and 16 Personalities says ISFJs are true altruists, meeting kindness with kindness-in-excess and engaging the work and people they believe in with enthusiasm and generosity. Even looking at the strengths and weaknesses, I think this personality type fits me well. 

So how might I use this knowledge during ProRo? Definitely when working with others it will help to know my strengths and weaknesses so I can be the best me possible [does that make sense?] and form hopefully lasting relationships with faculty members. Even when helping students, my strengths may help in ways faculty members strengths may not be as helpful. Who knows. 

Too much you wanted to know about me? NEVER!

Monday, January 25, 2016

First Meeting of Many

Today was the first time I attended a weekly meeting and had a good understanding of the key discussion points. The hot topics included:

Adding EMR to curriculum
As more fieldwork sites make the switch to electronic documentation, students should know how to access and utilize EMRs, especially when looking for physician referrals/orders and conducting chart reviews

Updates on Fieldwork
The class of 2016 is currently on their first Level II FW, and the class of 2017 is going on their first Level I FW in March. The first year students will all be doing their first week in a pediatric setting.  Lots of students means lots of sites are needed, and right now many sites aren't willing to take a student so there are some issues but from the way things are going and a big response from former students on Facebook there should be enough places for everyone. 

Updates on Selectives
Selectives, sound like electives, more or less the same. All students are required to be in a selective every semester, and there are 6 or 7 selectives available to students. However, some selectives are only one semester while others may last two or three semesters. Everything is going well, and I am helping out with the St. Vincent's selective. You can read more about St. Vincent's here, but it is a student-run clinic and the OT students get to practice their skills on real clients. It's pretty cool!

Also, to build camaraderie within the staff, everyone goes out for lunch on Tuesdays. Sounds tasty for having not explored much of Galveston but also expensive! I'll probably go once a month with everyone. 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Project Ideas

As the end of another week draws near, my site mentor and I have been brainstorming ideas for my project as well as other activities I can engage in during my time here. Since UTMB has never experienced an EOTD student completing a ProRo at their site, all of this is uncharted territory for everyone. Most of the professors have their own research projects, which MOT students will be helping with, so that's not really an option. I could do something simple like a flyer or poster to help students, but I'm not sure that would be beneficial.

Another project my site mentor and I have talked about is some sort of program for the fieldwork class. After talking with the fieldwork coordinator, it sounds like she wants to create some sort of online continuing education course for fieldwork supervisors. Definitely sounds like something I can do, and it seems that it would greatly benefit the program, and clinical instructors too. But I don't have a clue how to organize all the information. Topics included recent research, communication, AOTA standards, site objectives, goal writing, and expectations, to name a few. A PowerPoint or Prezi sound like options but I don't think that's the best option for organizing information.

Decisions, any suggestions for me?

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

One Down, Fifteen to Go

Or I suppose since it is Monday we're at the start of week two. 

I meant to write all of this on Friday but I was exhausted after I got home. Plus Andrew had to fly to D.C. for the weekend for some big board meeting, I was a total bum on the couch. I think I'm gonna like it at UTMB, but the drive is horrendous. I spend an hour in the car plus 20 minutes or so taking the shuttle or walking to the School of Health Professions (SHP) building. Basically, I'm out the door by 6:30 every morning. Yuck. And you guessed it, I don't get home until 6:30 or 7:00 pm either. Plus, the commute doesn't factor in the awful Houston traffic--but I'm grateful to be traveling against the flow of traffic both ways. I checked the mileage on my car--I put over 500 miles on my car in a week!

But it isn't all bad. I get to park across the street from the beach! [insert reminder to share a picture] I think I will fit in well with the staff members, and I'm also feeling close to the students (but really they have no idea who I am). I can empathize with them you could say.

Here's what my weekly schedule is shaping up to be:

Pediatrics Lecture 8-10 am 
Mondays, Tuesdays, & Fridays

Pediatrics Lab 8-10, 10-12, 1-3

Department Meeting 12-1 pm

Fieldwork Class 3-5 pm

St. Vincent's Clinic 1-4 pm

Time outside of that schedule will likely be spent on plenty of other things...not sure what those things are yet aside from my final project. I anticipate having little free time but that doesn't mean I won't get distracted but enough spare time so I won't be pulled in a thousand different directions. It should be interesting to say the least. Also I had a three day weekend, hollaaaaa! Loved having Monday to myself.

Also on a much more personal note, my grandpa had a very minor stroke over the weekend. I think he's doing okay but keep him in your prayers!

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Last Semester EVER

Hi friends!

So y'all may notice a few changes in the coming months. Next week I'll be starting my last semester of OT school and I'll be finishing fieldwork at UTMB in Galveston. Basically my blog is gonna turn into a sounding board for my OT adventures. My main focus for fieldwork this next semester is academia--learning all the ins and outs of the other side. Should be interesting since I'm still technically on the student side.

So if I lose you as a follower, I'll miss you but not that much ouch sorry I will miss you some. So between now and next Monday, I'll be soaking up what little precious time of Christmas break I have left. Oh and trying to unpack the apartment so it feels more like home! And binge watching Friends on Netflix. Always.