Title

Occupational Science Students' Ethnographic Approach to Understanding Women's Employability

Location

Room B

Start Time

18-10-2013 11:35 AM

End Time

18-10-2013 12:05 PM

Session Type

Research Paper

Abstract

An ethnographic research project at Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) in Richmond, Kentucky, helps senior occupational science (OS) students’ transition into the masters’ in occupational therapy program by affording the opportunity to understand and apply social advocacy concepts to their future occupational therapy practice. Advocacy, in its most simple form, means to support a cause, which can take the shape of an individual, event, or circumstance and the purposeful actions causing an effect or consequence (Merriam-Webster’s, 2011). For these students’, the principle of doing, or carrying out an advocacy research project, helps to create their occupational identity (Crepeau, Cohn, & Schell, 2003) and enables the students to understand the impact of occupations on individuals’ sense of health and well-being (Royeen, 2003).

The Liberty Place House of Recovery for Women (Liberty Place), in Richmond, Kentucky, is a state-funded, six - twelve month community residential program that seeks to adequately serve Kentucky women who are recovering substance abusers (“About the Program,” para. 4). Assisting Liberty Place in advocating for the women, the students offer their skills in organizing an employment fair, matching the women with local employers, and understanding the women’s employment needs. Students begin to address the women’s needs, rights, and interests in employment while learning fundamental occupational therapy principles in the area of work, such as clients’ (1) managing work time, (2) redeveloping work habits and skills, and (3) work-related social behaviors (Early, 2008).

Participants of this research presentation will be able to 1) learn about one group of occupational science students’ research experience in an advocacy course, 2) learn about a small-scale ethnographic study conducted spring 2013, that explores women who are recovering substance abusers and their perceptions of employability, 3) discuss the study results within the context of occupational science and broad Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) philosophy, and 4) understand advocacy as it relates to employability.

Key Words: advocacy, women’s employability, occupational science

References

About the Program (2012). Kentucky River Foothills Development Council, Inc. Retrieved from http://www.Foothillscap.org/Services/LibertyPlaceProgram.html

Crepeau, E.B., Cohn, E. & Schell, B. (2003). Willard and Spackman’s Occupational Therapy, 10th ed., Lippincott Williams & Wilkins: New York, NY.

Early, M.B. (2008). Mental Health Concepts and Techniques for the Occupational Therapy Assistant, 4th ed., Wolters Kluwer/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins: New York, NY.

Royeen, C. B. (2003). Chaotic occupational therapy: Collecting wisdom for a complex profession [Eleanor Clarke Slagle Lecture]. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 57(6), 609-624. doi.10.5014/ajot.57.6.609

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Oct 18th, 11:35 AM Oct 18th, 12:05 PM

Occupational Science Students' Ethnographic Approach to Understanding Women's Employability

Room B

An ethnographic research project at Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) in Richmond, Kentucky, helps senior occupational science (OS) students’ transition into the masters’ in occupational therapy program by affording the opportunity to understand and apply social advocacy concepts to their future occupational therapy practice. Advocacy, in its most simple form, means to support a cause, which can take the shape of an individual, event, or circumstance and the purposeful actions causing an effect or consequence (Merriam-Webster’s, 2011). For these students’, the principle of doing, or carrying out an advocacy research project, helps to create their occupational identity (Crepeau, Cohn, & Schell, 2003) and enables the students to understand the impact of occupations on individuals’ sense of health and well-being (Royeen, 2003).

The Liberty Place House of Recovery for Women (Liberty Place), in Richmond, Kentucky, is a state-funded, six - twelve month community residential program that seeks to adequately serve Kentucky women who are recovering substance abusers (“About the Program,” para. 4). Assisting Liberty Place in advocating for the women, the students offer their skills in organizing an employment fair, matching the women with local employers, and understanding the women’s employment needs. Students begin to address the women’s needs, rights, and interests in employment while learning fundamental occupational therapy principles in the area of work, such as clients’ (1) managing work time, (2) redeveloping work habits and skills, and (3) work-related social behaviors (Early, 2008).

Participants of this research presentation will be able to 1) learn about one group of occupational science students’ research experience in an advocacy course, 2) learn about a small-scale ethnographic study conducted spring 2013, that explores women who are recovering substance abusers and their perceptions of employability, 3) discuss the study results within the context of occupational science and broad Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) philosophy, and 4) understand advocacy as it relates to employability.

Key Words: advocacy, women’s employability, occupational science