Enter a growing health care profession in one of the few entry-level programs in the country.
Dr. Ann Burkhardt
Professor, Chair and Program
Director of Occupational Therapy
Occupational therapists (OTs) focus on increasing individuals’ independence and participation and engagement in daily living activities. They help people live their lives to the fullest by promoting health and well-being. OTs help people develop, recover, adapt, enhance, learn, and improve the skills needed for accomplishing their goals and dreams. With a passion for improving the lives of others and a belief in the power of holistic health care, you aim to make a difference.
Drake’s accelerated, three-year OTD—a pre-occupational therapy program for undergraduates—is a great way to pursue your degree right out of high school. Drake’s entry-level program is one of only a few in the country. As a pre-OT student, you will complete a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Sciences followed by a three-year Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) degree program. In your final year of completing your Health Sciences degree, you will be given full consideration for admission into the professional OTD program.
Throughout your Drake experience, you’ll receive individualized attention from expert faculty and staff invested in you and your future.
You’ll also experience the benefits that all Drake Bulldogs enjoy—small class size; professors at the top of their field who teach, mentor, and collaborate with you on projects and research; and a rigorous (and fascinating!) liberal arts curriculum.
You’ll study in a state-of-the-art facility that includes lab and functional spaces. You will also participate in inter-professional experiences through the collaboration Drake College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences has with Des Moines University, Des Moines Area Community College, and Mercy College of Health Sciences. You will benefit from job shadowing experiences, career exploration opportunities, practice management skills, and an understanding of the health care system. You will also have the opportunity to become an active member of the Iowa Occupational Therapy Association and have ample opportunities to participate in community advocacy.
Career opportunities for occupational therapists are growing more quickly than the average for most professions. The job outlook for occupational therapy is projected to grow 27 percent from 2014 to 2024.
Employment opportunities following graduation: