County College of Morris (CCM) through its Health and Exercise Science Department is offering a joint Associate in Science degree in Occupational Therapy Assistant with the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ).
The Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) program was developed in response to the strong demand for OTA practitioners at the local, state and national levels. The collaboration between UMDNJ and CCM prepares students for employment in healthcare, educational and other community settings.
Occupational therapy is listed as one of the nation’s 150 best recession proof jobs. Due to the rising number of patients and an aging population, employment in the field is increasing with an anticipated 30 percent growth rate by 2018. That growth rate is greater than the average for all occupations.
OTAs work under the direction of an occupational therapist assisting patients with their development, disability or recovery issues. They work with individuals in their homes, community centers, nursing homes and rehabilitation hospitals.
Students in the joint UMDNJ-CCM program complete their prerequisite course requirements at CCM in Randolph and their professional coursework at UMDNJ’s Scotch Plains campus. The professional coursework includes supervised fieldwork in healthcare, education and community settings. Full- and part-time study options are available.
Graduates of an accredited OTA program are eligible to sit for a national certification exam and once certified can obtain state licensure to practice as a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA) in New Jersey. Students may choose to further their education by completing a master’s degree or entry-level clinical doctorate and becoming certified as an occupational therapist.