Alumnus Randy Marti, MS '03, OTR, is passionate about working with the School of Health and Medical Sciences (SHMS) Occupational Therapy students whom he supervises while they are on fieldwork assignments at Universal Institute for Rehabilitation in Livingston, New Jersey, a leading provider of rehabilitation and living services for individuals affected by traumatic brain and/or spinal cord injuries. Marti's affinity for SHMS stems from his own experiences in the master's program. "I had a Level-II fieldwork clinical through SHMS with Universal for four months in 2001," he recalls. Universal hired him after his graduation — 11 years later, he is now the Director of Rehabilitation/Occupational Therapist.
Marti's responsibilities include serving as clinical education coordinator. He has moved Universal toward becoming a learning institute, which now has affiliations with 18 universities whose health-sciences students do fieldwork there in occupational therapy as well as physical therapy and speech-language pathology.
"Education is a passion for me,"stresses Marti, who also serves as an adjunct professor at SHMS. "My goal is to help bridge that gap between what students learn in the classroom, from textbooks and lectures, to a real-world medical setting. Ultimately, I want my students to become even better practitioners than me."
Marti has a soft spot in his heart for SHMS and its students. "SHMS gave me the ability to practice and be exposed to Universal Institute, so it is only fitting that I give back to my school," he says. Marti once doubled the number of SHMS students Universal accepted for fieldwork assignments in order to help out the School's Department of Occupational Therapy.
This outlook is one of many reasons the department gave Marti the Outstanding Clinical Supervisor Award in 2013. "I'm humbled and awed by this award, but awards are not why I do what I do," he says. "I have a passion for OT and for education, and I want students to learn from the very best providers and go out into the world and make a difference."
This story originally appeared in the 2013 issue of Insights magazine, published annually by the School of Health and Medical Sciences. Read the rest of the magazine here.
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