2019 Workshops


I Am Yoga: Using Yoga and Mindfulness Interventions to Foster Social-Emotional Learning in Toddlers and Preschoolers

Presenter: Marta Muusz, MS, OTRL, Fieldwork Coordinator, Eastern Michigan University Occupational Therapy Program

Abstract: The importance of providing young children with high-quality early educational experiences is well-documented. It is imperative for children as young as toddlers and preschoolers to begin developing the emotional self-regulation, cognitive flexibility, and coping skills that will lead to life-long resiliency, health, and wellness, as well as successful participation in school and social situations. This session will provide the evidence for using yoga and mindfulness interventions with young children, outline a framework for providing these interventions within a community-based preschool setting, and provide resources for implementing such interventions within clinical, community, or school-based practice.

 Workshop powerpoint and handout 


MiPain: OT’s role in an intensive pain multidisciplinary program

Presenters: Joe Latocki, OTR/L and Michelle De Marco , OTR/L outpatient occupational therapists at Pediatric Rehabilitation Center for Michigan Medicine

Abstract: This presentation will provide a brief education on amplified pain syndrome and complex regional pain syndrome. Discussion concerning the location of other intense pain programs around the country and the history of Mipain program at Michigan Medicine will be included as well as a review of the disciplines involved and their roles. The OT role should focus on function, independence, ADL’s, IADL’s, habits, and routines. The presentation will include appropriate standardized evaluations, and a variety of treatment approaches. Preliminary results from the past year of the program will be included.     


 Workshop powerpoint 

MOHO without borders: Occupational therapy abroad Special SKYPE session for students and others interested in international practice. Sponsored by the EMU Pi Theta Epsilon, Epsilon chapter.

Presenter: Sherrie E. Buckley, MOT, OTR/L, Occupational Therapy Manager St. Patrick’s Mental Health Services, Dublin, Ireland. Coordinator for the Comprehensive Driving Programme

Abstract: We are increasingly living in a global community with more of us traveling and seeing the world, instilling us with perspective. In the business world, working abroad can enhance your resume as it is presumed you will develop certain skills that may give you an edge over your competitors. Some of the benefits of working abroad include: experiencing different cultures and building cultural awareness, increasing communication skills, building confidence and self- reliance and learning to be flexible and adaptable in situations. Sherrie will talk about her experiences of moving to Ireland and working there as an occupational therapist which has included working with occupational therapists from a variety of countries.


Human Trafficking In Health Care Settings

Presenter: David Manville LMSW/ACSW, Full Time Lecturer and BSW Advisor, Eastern Michigan University School of Social Work; President: Sparrow Freedom Project

Abstract: Human Trafficking is a global issue, and victims include men, women, and children. Every country is affected, including the United States. In 2016, there were over 7,500 tips of human trafficking reported to the U.S. National Human Trafficking Hotline, more than 2,000 of which involved children and youth under the age of 18. Trafficked persons often go unnoticed with over half of labor and sex trafficking survivors reporting that they had accessed health care at least once while being trafficked. Nearly 97% indicated they had never been provided with information or resources about human trafficking while visiting the health care provider. This underscores the reality that medical care providers are too often unprepared to identify and appropriately respond to trafficked persons.


Workshop handouts

Engaging Community Organizations to Implement Evidence Informed Practice Models for Older Adult Populations: Examples & Lessons Learned

Presenter: Bethany Burge, MS, OTR/L, CNP, CAPS Director of Occupational Therapy Clinical and Community Services at Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels & Part-Time Lecturer at the School of Health Sciences, College of Health & Human Services at Eastern Michigan University

Abstract: Successful Aging-In-Place can be a challenge for many older adults, however; emerging interdisciplinary practice models have been introduced to reduce maladaptive behavior and empower older adults to be active self-managers of their health. Acting as a catalyst, transnational research of falls prevention and home safety has begun to expand opportunities for Occupational Therapy practitioners to tangibly demonstrate our distinct value through the development of innovative geriatric-centric programming. Participants of this workshop will learn about demonstration pilot programs related to Home Modifications and other community-based resources that support healthy aging.


Connecting Immersive Virtual Reality Intervention to Rehabilitation Goals

Presenter: Michael Blackstock MS, OTR/L, Michigan Medicine: University of Michigan Hospital, Inpatient rehabilitation

Abstract: Immersive virtual reality provides an engaging, motivating, and task-oriented experience that provides us with the requisite use of repetition, intensity and grade-ability for skill acquisition and performance. This session will use case based videos and examples along with a didactic approach to define immersive virtual reality, compare and contrast several virtual reality platforms, and review current evidence in order to integrate use of this technology as a supplement to traditional evidence-based treatments and clinical reasoning to achieve our patients’ rehabilitation goals



The Environment as a Therapeutic Instrument in Occupational Therapy: An Exploration through the Lens of Animal-assisted Interventions

Keynote Presenter Dr. Wendy Wood, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, Colorado State University

Abstract: Systematic reviews produced by the Evidence-based Practice Project of the American Occupational Therapy Association verify that the research evidence supporting environment based interventions is strong. But what are environment-based interventions? And what is the relationship of environment-based interventions to occupation-based practices? Are these two evidence-based practices essentially the same thing? If not, then does the presence of one imply that the other is likely operative as well? We will explore the meaning of environment-based interventions and its relationship to occupation-based practices in this lecture. To support this exploration, we will delve into the research literature on animal-assisted interventions, a treatment tool that is growing in popularity in occupational therapy and well beyond. Indeed, a plethora of published studies, reviews, and abstracts over the past five years suggest that occupational therapy practitioners are tapping the therapeutic power of animals to benefit people of nearly all ages, from toddlers to the oldest old. The incorporation of animals in occupational therapy has also been regarded as a promising, nonpharmacologic environment based intervention. Accordingly, exploring this literature can help to elucidate the meaning of environment-based interventions in occupational therapy more broadly, as well as their precise relationship to occupational therapy’s distinct focus on everyday occupation.



Psychoneuroimmunology: Mind, brain and body linked for health

Presenter: Gretchen Dahl Reeves, PhD., OTL, FAOTA is an emeritus faculty member of the EMU Occupational Therapy program, having served for 16 years teaching courses in neuroscience, pediatrics and research. Her doctorate in Biopsychology from the University of Michigan provided the underpinnings of her interest in brain and behavior relationships.

Abstract: Occupational Therapists identify holistic intervention and client-centered practice as essential elements in service delivery. Therapeutic relationships can have a powerful impact on health. This presentation will review the connections that link the brain and the immune system as reported in the literature and validate the importance of relationship-building in practice.

Workshop powerpoint



Private meeting with Dr. Wendy Wood

Following lunch students will have the opportunity to meet with Dr. Wood for an hour long Q and A and discussion. Don’t miss this rare opportunity! Come prepared to ask questions and share ideas.


POSTER SESSION 3:00-4:30  

A poster session will follow the afternoon workshops. Earn up to 2 PDUs.