Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy is a diverse field that assists people with disabilities or other challenges to live the best lives possible. By focusing on the physical, psychological and social needs of its patients, occupational therapy assists people in developing skills and attitudes to adapt to injury, disease, and disability so that their lives become more productive and meaningful.

Major Tracks

Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy - 4-Year Plan

Students are offered cross-curriculum courses in biology, human anatomy and physiology, abnormal psychology and developmental psychology to prepare for a career in occupational therapy.

McKendree offers a five-year cooperative 3+2 program with the School of Medicine at Washington University. In this program, you will spend your first three years at McKendree and the final two years at Washington University. Upon completion of the liberal arts component, the requirements for your major, and a year in the occupational therapy program at Washington University, you will earn a bachelor’s degree from McKendree. After satisfactory completion of all requirements, including one more year of graduate work, you will earn a master’s degree in occupational therapy from Washington University.

You must take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), and complete at least 30 hours of volunteer time in an occupational therapy related setting. Applicants must also have CPR certification when they apply, which may be obtained by enrolling in PED 206 (First Aid) or in a certified American Red Cross CPR program.

You may also elect to complete your bachelor’s degree at McKendree (e.g., biology, psychology, athletic training, etc.) and then apply to Washington University or other graduate programs in occupational therapy.

Program Highlights

McKendree assists our occupational therapy students in gaining valuable insight into the profession through a variety of community service opportunities, including:

•   Autism centers

•   Child care facilities

•   Special Olympics

•   Group homes

•   Elderly care facilities

•   Hospitals

•   Rehabilitation facilities

•   Summer camps for children with special needs

•   Equestrian programs


Occupational therapists work with the elderly, babies, infants, children, adults with disabilities, individuals with illnesses, or individuals dealing with an acute injury. Employers of occupational therapists include:

School systems

•   Long-term care facilities

•   Hospitals

•   Home health care organizations

•   Industry, social service agencies

•   Rehabilitation facilities

Meet the Faculty


Tami EgglestonDr. Tami Eggleston

Carnegie Hall 202
(618) 537-6859

Robb VanPutteDr. Robb D. VanPutte

Voigt Science Hall 223A
(618) 537-6930


Dawn HankinsDr. Dawn M. Hankins

Chair, Division of Health
Bearcat Hall 102
(618) 537-6917