Occupational Therapist In-Training Visits HHS Anatomy and Physiology Classes


Issraa Yaljrouka being taped by OT in-training Joy Dallessio.

Stephanie Doot, Contributor

Joy Dallessio, an occupational therapist (OT) major at Quinnipiac University, visited the HHS Anatomy and Physiology classes on March 13, 2014. Dallesio is the daughter of HHS science teacher Joanne Dallessio.

In a PowerPoint presentation, Joy Dallessio incorporated a link to a cartoon video that explained different real-life situations that OT work in. Some things that were mentioned were: using different tools and strategies to reach a patient’s goal, caring for an infant, helping in work environments, assisting patients with driving and grocery shopping, returning patients to gardening and bike riding, and helping patients manage being independent. “We promote health and wellness,” Dallessio explained. To further explain OT, Dallessio described the different settings in which OTs practice such as: schools, hospitals, mental health facilities, and work environments. Dallessio illustrated the work of an OT with an example of working with a child that has cerebral palsy. In that circumstance, the OT has to always be able to adapt to the child’s needs and learn what motivational skills can be used with the child. Another thing an OT has to do is to check up on the child’s siblings and how the siblings are coping with the disabled child.

Dallessio added some information about Quinnipiac University and its OT program. Quinnipiac has one of the highest passing rates with 90-100 percent on the OT exam. Dallessio also talked about Quinnipiac’s study abroad opportunities and mentioned her opportunity to study in Italy. Dallessio told students about the different classes she took and how the labs she’s done in the past will help with future clients such as using electrodes on an arm to stimulate the muscles. Field work is a major part in her studies and Dallessio explained how taking people to farms to work with the animals helps with motivation. Dallessio also discussed her visit to a sensory gym and her plans to do field work at a mobility center focusing on driving.

Throughout the presentation, teacher, Joanne Dallessio, and the students were actively involved.  Senior student Issraa Yaljrouka, let Joy tape her arm to illustrate how an OT can help treat carpal tunnel. Senior Conor Gugliotta volunteered to let Joy show the class how to tape for swelling. Towards the end of the presentation Dallessio gave the students the opportunity to experience some tools used in OT such as therapy putty. These experiences will help the students better relate to their class lessons on anatomy and physiology.OT visitor 1