Meet The January 2021 Occupational Therapy Student Of The Month: Armani Guillama
Student of the Month Spotlight: January 2021
Armani Guillama, OT1 Doctor of Occupational Therapy Candidate from Abilene, TX
Meet Armani Guillama! Armani is a first year OTD student who has been recognized by his faculty for his willingness to step up and help his classmates. He is currently serving as Vice President of the Student Occupational Therapy Association, and is a member of the Interprofessional Student Alliance. He is a volunteer with Adaptive CrossFit for Kids. His warm personality, positive attitude, and commitment to helping others will be called upon as he develops his career path as an occupational therapist. Armani was nominated for Student of the Month by Clinical Assistant Professor Dr. Brittany Adams.
Interview with Armani:
Why did you choose Western New England University?
Being from Texas, I wanted an opportunity to further my education in a place that I had never been to before. I started researching schools in this area that offered the doctor of occupational therapy degree and came across Western New England University, which quickly became my top choice. I was offered a spot in February and decided to visit the campus to take a tour. I was able to engage with current students, faculty, and staff and everyone was so welcoming, and I left the tour knowing that this is where I was supposed to be.
Please share your thoughts about the occupational therapy program at Western New England University.
It has been a fantastic experience thus far. The class sizes are small, which allows us to build relationships with my peers and professors. Our professors do an excellent job at creating an environment that allows us to learn the material in the classroom and apply it in a real-world setting. The faculty and staff understand how challenging a doctorate-level program can be, and they are incredibly supportive and genuinely care about the students succeeding in the program. The program also offers various volunteering opportunities that allow us to get involved in the community and give back, which I appreciate.
What are your current career aspirations?
I am keeping an open mind, but I would love to gain experience in an inpatient setting and specialize in hand therapy. I would also love to work with athletes in some form or fashion. Later in my career, I would like to open up a private practice and develop a product that could benefit individuals who are seeking occupational therapy services.
What advice would you provide to a student considering occupational therapy for a career?
My advice to those considering occupational therapy as a career is that occupational therapists can work in different settings. Knowing how versatile this career path allows someone to find their true place within this field. As a career, occupational therapy has so much potential for depth and personal growth. I would also encourage students to enjoy the process of school, build relationships along the way, and know that you have been called to a field where you have the privilege to love and help people achieve their goals.
Armani’s Faculty Advisor (Deborah Latour, OTD, Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy) shared the following thoughts:
“Armani is a diligent student, but most importantly, he appears to be a quality person! He participates actively in class and study groups and is quick to offer assistance to others. In a short time, he has acquired a strong group of friends and is a leader in his cohort. There is a saying, that ‘to have a friend, one must be a friend’. Armani is a great example of this!”
Learn more about the opportunities available to our students by visiting our student organizations page here.