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09-03-2014

Whitney Chosen to Lead Proposed Occupational Therapy Program at Clarkson University

Rondalyn V. Whitney OTR/L, FAOTA, has been appointed director and founding chair of the proposed Occupational Therapy program and associate professor of occupational therapy at Clarkson University. She was previously the interim director of the doctoral program and assistant professor at the University of the Sciences Occupational Therapy Department in Philadelphia, Pa.

Rondalyn V. WhitneyOccupational therapists help people across the lifespan participate in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities (occupations).

Clarkson's proposed Master of Science in Occupational Therapy (M.S. in OT) program will complement the University's successful Doctor of Physical Therapy and Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies programs and will be housed in the same facility, Clarkson Hall, on Clarkson's downtown campus.

"We are truly excited as the proposed Master of Science in Occupational Therapy program is an excellent complement to our other very successful health professions programs," said Clarkson President Tony Collins. "This proposed offering makes sense because we have the facilities to provide training in this ever-growing field and Rondalyn Whitney has the extensive academic, clinical and hands-on business experience to make it work. The University has excellent working relationships with our regional health care providers and educators, and the graduates of this new program will join the other medical professionals with Clarkson degrees filling a growing need in the North Country and beyond."

Clarkson is currently submitting the necessary applications to the New York State Education Department and the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education.

The graduate program will be designed to take advantage of Clarkson's relationships with regional health care and educational facilities, and other innovative settings.

Whitney has extensive academic, clinical and hands-on business experience. She established Rondalyn Whitney & Associates Consulting & Private Practice in 2012. She was also research coordinator IV at the Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore. From 1999-2005, she was founding principal and clinical director of The Lighthouse Project Occupational Therapy Clinic, where she was a pioneer in developing thematically based social skills interventions through a high-interest camp model.  

Whitney has taught academic and clinical courses at San Jose State University, Towson University, and the Kennedy Krieger Institute. At San Jose State University, she was clinical instructor for more than 100 undergraduate and graduate occupational therapy students in multiple sites, including K-8 schools throughout Northern California, clinical inpatient setting and summer camp programs.

Her research focuses on maternal stress and quality of life issues for families with children with disabilities and the use of telehealth to reduce geographic and socioeconomic barriers to health care.

Whitney is a member of the American Occupational Therapy Association Roster of Fellows, one of the highest honors of her profession. She also received the Janice Matsutsuyu Outstanding Service Award from the Occupational Therapy Association of California and the Service Excellence Award from the Maryland Occupational Therapy Association.

This summer, Whitney received a grant from the Samson Foundation, which funded a trip to Japan to present her research to the World Federation of Occupational Therapists. One of her research students, who also presented there, was the first student from the University of Sciences to ever present at the world conference.

Whitney has been active in community service and has made many professional presentations at conferences and invited seminars. She is also the co-editor of the first and only occupational therapy textbook on writing, The Writer’s Toolkit.

She received her bachelor of arts degree in behavioral psychology from Marshall University in West Virginia, her master of occupational therapy degree from Samuel Merritt College in Oakland, Calif., and her Ph.D. in international health sciences from Trident University International.

Whitney is a licensed occupational therapist in Pennsylvania and Maryland, and holds certifications in several areas of advanced practice.

Read the U.S. News article at http://money.usnews.com/careers/best-jobs/occupational-therapist .

Read more about occupational therapy at http://www.aota.org .

Clarkson University launches leaders into the global economy. One in six alumni already leads as a CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. Located just outside the Adirondack Park in Potsdam, N.Y., Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university for undergraduates with select graduate programs in signature areas of academic excellence directed toward the world’s pressing issues. Through 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, sciences and the health professions, the entire learning-living community spans boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures to build powers of observation, challenge the status quo, and connect discovery and engineering innovation with enterprise.

[A photograph for media use is available at http://www.clarkson.edu/news/photos/rwhitney.jpg.]

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or aharrison@clarkson.edu.]

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