Milligan College’s occupational therapy program will present a research symposium on Monday, Feb. 25, from 4-7 p.m. at the college’s Thompson Center located on Emmanuel Hill. The conference is free and open to the public. Two free contact hours are available for OT professionals who attend.
The conference will feature eight student-led research projects that cover a range of topics, including a collaborative art project, movement in elementary classrooms, emotional intelligence’s connection to leadership and the impact of educational resources for creating healthier workspaces.
Brittany Adkins, Olivia Stafford and Sunshine Taylor will present on the collaborative art project they developed to connect individuals with intellectual disabilities with local professional artists. They provided participants with art supplies and prompts for creating a work of art that was then given to a professional artist to complete or use as inspiration.
“The mission behind our project is to reduce stigma around disabilities and provide an opportunity for greater collaboration between artists in the region,” said Taylor. “We worked with one client who was particularly passionate about art. We learned that his brother is a professional artist in Asheville who agreed to collaborate with him. This project has given them a way to grow closer through a shared passion.”
All of the artwork will be on display through an exhibit, “For the Love of Art,” at the Corner Cup in Jonesborough, Tennessee, beginning March 22.
For Molly Simonsen and Anna Smith, their research focused on the benefits of movement in elementary school classrooms. They introduced educational activities into classrooms at Providence Academy that incorporated movement, like having students march in place and tap their knees as they practice multiplication.
“Children can only remain still and focused for so long,” said Simonsen. “Our group provided teachers with a resource book of everyday activities and tools that allow students to connect their lessons with movement. When we visited the classrooms to teach these activities, the students were excited to not only move, but to learn.”
Milligan’s master’s level occupational therapy program prepares therapists to address the physical, psychological and cognitive aspects of a person’s well-being through engagement in activity in all of their environments. Learn more at http://www.milligan.edu/msot.