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Occupational Therapy Assistant Program
Western New Mexico University’s Occupational Therapy Assistant Program admitted its first class in 1993, making it the oldest Occupational Therapy Assistant Program in New Mexico. Since its inception, the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program has graduated over 200 students. Graduates of the program can be found in many different work settings and in many different roles: school based clinicians, home health providers, community based practitioners, service delivery managers, case managers, early intervention specialists, development specialists, senior citizen coordinators, and employees in skilled nursing facilities or outpatient clinics, just to mention a few.
Mission of the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program
Consistent with the missions of Western New Mexico University, the College of Health and Human Services, and the School of Allied Health, the Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) Program prepares students to meet the challenges of providing entry-level occupational therapy services in both established and emerging areas of practice. Emphasis is placed on cultural diversity, rural and regional healthcare, an appreciation for life-long learning, and the effective implementation of evidence-based practice.
The OTA program is fully accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) @ www.acoteonline.org of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) @ www.aota.org; located at 4720 Montgomery Lane Suite 200, Bethesda MD 20814-3449. Tel # 301.652.2682 or TDD 1.800.377.8555
Graduates of the program receive an Associates of Science Degree and are eligible to sit for the national certification exam administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (www.nbcot.org). After successful completion of this exam, they receive the title of Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA).
Our Student Success Rates
Over the past three years (2010, 2011, 2012), Fifty-Six students graduated. Forty students took the National Certification examination for Occupational Therapy Assistant for the first time, thirty one of them passed that exam (78%). Over the past 17 years, we have had an overall pass rate including repeat takers of 95%.
Many states have some sort of regulation in order to practice. In New Mexico, occupational therapy personnel must be licensed with the New Mexico Board of Examiners for Occupational Therapy. For more information about New Mexico licensure go to : http://www.rld.state.nm.us/OccupationalTherapy/index.html
To contact the School of Allied Health :
Please call us at 575.538.6442 or 575.538.6442. Our fax # is 575.538.6126. You may also contact Connie Rooks, the Program Director.
Please call 575.538.6000 or request admissions information.