LaGuardia Community College Occupational Therapy Assistant Program Receives Certificate of Accreditation
LONG ISLAND CITY, NY (October 4, 2023) — At its meeting on August 3-6, 2023, ACOTE® reviewed the Report of On-Site Evaluation (ROSE) regarding the Occupational Therapy Assistant Program at LaGuardia Community College/CUNY. All 115 Standards were found to be compliant and the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE®) voted to Grant a Status of Accreditation for a period of 10 years. This is the highest accreditation status granted by ACOTE® demonstrating the excellence of the LAGCC OTA Program and the College.
Dr. Regina M. Lehman MS, OT/L, Professor and OTA Program Director said the reaccreditation Self-Study process is “arduous.” It occurs over an 18-month period prior to the On-Site visit by the ACOTE® team.
“The Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) Program must examine and evaluate all aspects of the program to address and meet 115 Standards for program administration, curriculum, and fieldwork education,” Dr. Lehman said. “The self-study process involves broad participation across the College including administration, faculty, staff, and students. The self-study is written and submitted by the OTA Program faculty three months prior to the on-site visit.
The report from the on-site ACOTE team stated: “The administration is lauded for the financial and time commitment provided to incoming and current faculty via the new faculty colloquium, continuous learning opportunities via the center for teaching and learning and the credentialing programs offered,” “The ability to have the funding and time for professional development allows the program faculty the chance to embed new training and knowledge such as assessment measure development, innovative curricular design, and diversity, equity, and inclusivity initiatives that reflect the communities the program encompasses and collaboration. The faculty are applauded for their dedication to thoughtfully meeting the needs of each individual student and to facilitate a welcoming community for all students where they feel cared about as an individual beyond their role as a student.”
The ACOTE® ensures quality occupational therapy education by developing accreditation standards and verifying implementation to support the preparation of competent occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants. ACOTE® accredited occupational therapy and occupational therapy assistant educational programs satisfy the states’ educational requirements in the United States and its territories. Students graduating from an ACOTE® accredited occupational therapy and occupational therapy assistant educational program are eligible to take the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) certification exam and apply for licensure in all states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.
“The LAGCC OTA Program is well-known in the NYC Metropolitan area for its excellence in education of future occupational therapy assistants,” said Dr. Lehman. “Graduates of the program go on to work within the communities in all five boroughs in physical medicine and rehabilitation, pediatrics, and mental health settings and become fieldwork educators for current students. Many go on to continue their education to earn a Master’s degree to become occupational therapists. Current full-time and part-time faculty and College Laboratory Technicians are graduates of the program.
Dr. Lehman added that the LAGCC OTA Program is the only occupational therapy assistant program in CUNY. Earning the 10-year accreditation will enhance the reputation of the LAGCC OTA Program.
“Prospective students will be assured of the highest level of education within the College and the CUNY system,” Dr. Lehman said.
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LaGuardia Community College (LAGCC), a Hispanic-Serving Institution, located in Long Island City, Queens offers more than 50 degrees and certificates, and more than 65 continuing education programs to educate New Yorkers seeking new skills and careers. As an institution of the City University of New York (CUNY), the College reflects the legacy of our namesake, Fiorello H. LaGuardia, the former NYC mayor beloved for his advocacy of underserved populations. Since 1971, LaGuardia’s academic programs and support services have advanced the socioeconomic mobility of students while providing them with access to a high quality, affordable college education.