Occupational Therapy Assistant

Give people their independence.

Helping patients is our passion, and at Mercyhurst North East, our Occupational Therapy Assistant program trains students to not only master the physical side of the job, but the mental and emotional side as well. Our students help people of all ages regain, develop, or master everyday skills in order to live independent, productive, and satisfying lives. Whether it’s an infant with developmental problems, an elderly person facing health challenges, or a person living with disabilities, OTAs help patients with rehabilitative activities and exercises and monitor their progress while encouraging and motivating them along the way.

Did You Know?

2017 marked the centennial celebration of Occupation Therapy, which you can learn more about by visiting http://www.otcentennial.org.

Did You Know?

OTAs work in a variety of job settings, including nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, hospitals, mental health centers, and schools.

Did You Know?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, OTA employment will grow 41% between now and 2022, which is much faster than average for all occupations.

Sample Courses

Human Anatomy and Physiology
In an official introduction to the human body, students will learn the major organs, muscles, and overall structure of human anatomy.

Analysis of Human Movement
OTAs must have a thorough understanding of how each exercise will help or affect their patient, which is why knowing how the human body moves and operates is imperative.

Experience & Outcomes


Each student is required to complete 400 hours of clinical work at one of the multiple facilities committed to working with the North East program.


Graduates, upon successfully completing their program, are encouraged to sit for the NBCOT examination to become a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA).

Career Advancement

MLT majors may work in any section of the lab, from Hematology and Coagulation to General Chemistry Immunology, building skills in multiple areas of their field.

Dawn Earp, COTA/L
Academic fieldwork Coordinator/ Instruction
Mary Gavacs, M.Ed, OTR/L
Dirrector of Occupational Therapy Assistant Program