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Meet The February 2022 OTD Student Of The Month: Vini Thomas

  • Vini Thomas

WNE CoPHS Student of the Month Spotlight:   February 2022

 Vini Thomas, OT2 Doctor of Occupational Therapy Candidate from Floral Park, NY

 Meet Vini Thomas! Vini is a second-year occupational therapy student who is being recognized for her diligence as a student, her strong leadership skills, and her ability to effectively manage numerous academic and organizational responsibilities. She serves as Secretary for the Student Occupational Therapy Association (SOTA), Vice President of Pi Theta Epsilon, member of the Interprofessional Student Alliance, and serves as a liaison for the Coalition of Occupational Therapy Advocates for Diversity (COTAD) within the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences student organizations. Vini works as a Graduate Assistant, assisting with research projects and administrative tasks, and providing guidance to first year students. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from CUNY – York College in 2020. Vini was nominated for Student of the Month by her Professor, Dr. Erin Wells.

 Interview with Vini:

 Why did you choose Western New England University?

I first came across the Doctor of Occupational Therapy program at WNE on OTCAS during my search for a program that aligned with my goals and aspirations. Although I had considered a few other schools, the deciding factor was how intimate and hands-on the program is, as well as being close to home.

Please share your thoughts about the occupational therapy program at Western New England University.

What I love about the OTD program at Western New England is that the learning experience is hands-on, and we students have the opportunity to grow and become advocates for our future clients. I’ve taken part in various student organizations and each of those experiences have allowed me to grow as a leader and student and create valuable connections with fellow peers and leaders in the field. The intimate class sizes have helped me build close relationships with classmates and faculty.

 What are your current career aspirations?

 After completing the program, I hope to work as a Pediatric Occupational Therapist in an acute care setting. It is a dream of mine to form partnerships with agencies that provide services for vulnerable populations across the globe. Through this partnership, I hope to create a program that focuses on mental health and wellness strategies.

 What advice would you provide to a student considering occupational therapy for a career?

 I highly recommend that students jump in and get as much exposure and experience in the field as possible. There are so many opportunities for students to shadow practitioners; doing so helped me find clarity in deciding the route I want to take.

 Vini’s Faculty Advisor, Minna Levine, OTD, Associate Professor of Occupational Therapy, shared the following thoughts:

Vini shows compassion for others in her work as part of our College’s organizations, in her discussion of potential clients in her coursework, and in her research interests. The hard work and serious clinical concerns are all accompanied by a sparkling personality and a good sense of humor. It is a privilege to be her advisor.


Learn more about the opportunities available to our students by visiting our student organizations page here