I completed my first presentation for the new academic year today....just down the road at London South Bank University. A group of roughly 50 accelerated students just a few days into their OT programme. It was good to dust off the old memory stick and give a presentation after the summer break, although I return to the office with plans to tweak my presentation slightly.
I realised the other day my 10 year anniversary as a qualified OT is just around the corner - 2011! I've got plans to organise a reunion for my fellow 'Course 98' peers back in Cardiff. I can remember my first day at university very vividly. Lots of introduction, tours, forms to complete and instructions on how the programme would run over the next few weeks. It was very exciting but with a healthy dose of scary thrown in for good measure. Although 10 years have passed I'm pretty certain these feeling still apply for the students I met today...and the many other students starting in a few weeks.
But as one group starts...new graduates all over the UK are considering their employment options. Although jobs are more competitive today then for me 10 years ago the opportunities are far greater. Today, an occupational therapist can achieve consultant status - something that certainly wasn't possible 'back in the day' when I graduated! Standing out from the crowd when it comes applications is relevant in every profession but for an occupational student getting involved in the professional body is a great way to do so - and ironically not something that I ever considered!
I will look forward to meeting many more students over the next few months. September, October and November will see my memory stick and I travel all over the UK. I've become very knowledgeable about train stations and best coffee shops in each of the towns and cities I visit - so watch out I might be appearing at your University very soon. :-)