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Alyza Berson

Period 6/English 12

I will continue to learn more about Occupational Therapy practices and the different exercises.

I will learn some more of the anatomical terms so that I can follow along more easily.

I will narrow down my topic of research.

I will come prepared with questions for my mentor and discuss them with her each week.

I will go to the library to find a book about my topic and more specific research.


I have started my internship with my mentor (Nicole), an occupational therapist/hand

therapist and I have already learned so much about the environment of a therapy center. I spent

the first day taking all of the required trainings, including Compliance and Ethics, and the

Privacy trainings. These two concepts are very important in this work environment. Over the past

two weeks, I have learned to make the hot and cold packs, learned many of the exercises, and

observed my mentor with many of her patients. I have also had the opportunity to observe the

physical therapists and helped the “techs.” With Nicole, I have seen a wide range of patients,

including different age groups, locations of injuries, and medical issues. The nature of the

injuries that I have seen have been from post-surgical patients, diseases, and pain-relief

treatments. I have learned that setting goals is an important part of a patient’s recovery and it is

discussed on the first day when the patient is evaluated. The patient and therapist can then check

these goals off through the treatment. So far, I have not identified my strengths and weaknesses

in this new environment. However, I know that I have a lot to learn, especially when it comes to

knowing when the right times are to ask questions, interact with the patients, etc.
Alyza Berson
Week of 9/18/17
Period 6/English 12

1. Download Zotero onto my laptop through Google Chrome and make sure it works by

doing my weekly annotations through the program.

2. Get a binder and start organizing my articles and annotations.

3. Compare some of the information that I have learned and find and similarities and

differences among the information

4. Search more specific information pertaining to Occupational Therapy and even my

mentor’s area of specialty, hand therapy.

5. Look up more specific information on some of the disorders or injuries that my mentor

has and see what parts of the body are involved. Ask Nicole to explain more about each


6. Compile a list of questions for Nicole and set a time to talk with her about it.

7. Continue to narrow down my topic of research.

8. Create my research website.


This past week I have spent a majority of my time interning on the physical therapy side

of the facility. My mentor, Nicole, was out sick the first day I interned so I helped the tech set-

up, clean-up, and get patients what they needed during their sessions. I am really good at putting

pillowcases on now. I also helped fold laundry. All of this busy work is really helping me get to

know my way around the whole facility though. I also learned that they have no more paperwork
and everything is electronic now. I found this out because I was not able to file any papers when

they were slow at one point. The tech taught me a few stretches and showed me how to make

each heat pack. There is big, medium, and small wraps and also the different types of heat packs,

including the sandwich and the cervical. I am still working on remembering the correct order for

each. I worked a lot with the director, who is one of the physical therapists, and got to see a lot of

different injuries. With Nicole, she let me observe closely to a patient who had broken and

dislocated his elbow and broken his wrist.

Alyza Berson
Week of 10/9/17
English 12/ Period 6

1. Explore my more narrow topics of interest:

a. The effect that empowerment within a patient has on the timeliness of a recovery

b. The point along the rehabilitation process in which a patient should decrease

analgesics and increase physical activity

c. The effect that self-efficacy has on goal attainment during the rehabilitation


2. Make sure all paperwork is signed by Nicole.

3. Set up conference with Mrs. Sasser.

4. Continue to ask more questions at internship.

5. Write newsclip by October 22nd.


This week, I worked with the director of the facility and of physical therapists on Monday

because my mentor had a vacation day. I got to see an evaluation of a knee patient and the

director interacted with me a lot and tested some of my knowledge of the knee. I need to gain a
little bit more knowledge in the area, but it was okay because he explained each step he was

doing and why. I also got to file some papers at the front and talk a little bit with the front desk

secretary. She is very nice. On Wednesday, I worked with Nicole and got to observe “repeat”

patients and a new patient in which I saw Nicole make a splint for. Nicole explained the way that

nerves work through an arm and how it affects your hand while working on a different patient. I

also observed a patient that I’ve interacted with for many weeks who seemed to be getting more

frustrated about his recovery process because he had a slight setback and wants to see results.

On Thursday, I got to see another evaluation and it was for a girl close to my age who had

previously came to Nicole and now she is back. She’s had two surgeries on her hand and

considered a “miracle” that her hand still moves as much as it does. I will hopefully find out

more about this patient the next time she comes. I got to learn more about the nerves in the hand

with this patient. Nicole used many different evaluation tools like gripping, pinching, etc to test

the sensory in her hand and it was extremely interesting. I am really enjoying getting to work

with all of these patients and having Nicole as my mentor. Many of the stories of these patients

are so interesting and surprising.

Alyza Berson
Week of December 11, 2017
Pd. 6/English 12AP

1. DO REALLY WELL @ County Presentation!

2. Complete chart outline using feedback from thesis board group discussion.

3. Create a full sentence outline.

4. Remember to get hours sheet signed each week.

5. Find at least two more articles to get more supporting evidence for finalized topic.
6. Tell mentor how County Presentation went.


I have really enjoyed working at my internship. Everybody knows me now and I have

gotten to work with every therapist at least once. It is interesting to see how each one works with

their patients as well as interacts with me. A few of the therapists will explain things to me as

they go along talking to the patient while others talk to the patient and ask if I have any questions

after. Sometimes the therapists purely have conversation about what they are doing and the

treatment with the patient and other times they talk to me and the patient about our lives, like

how are weekend or holiday was, how their kids are, etc. The other day when I was leaving, one

of the secretary’s that I have talked to said, “You’re leaving? I barely got to see you today,”

which made me feel really good that she liked talking to me. Another occupational therapist has

just been hired, so I will be getting to observe her soon. I got to help show her some things as she

was shadowing my mentor one day. I have really enjoyed having the chance to observe the

patients who are “regulars” as well as the new patients. I get to see the regulars’ progression and

the new patients rehabilitation process from the very beginning.

My mentor has been really helpful in guiding me to a more specific topic for my research

project. She was helping me think of ideas for my thesis and gave me a few new articles on my


Alyza Berson
Week of January 8, 2018
Period 6/English 12AP

1. Begin to draft research paper and form paragraphs.

2. Discuss outline with Nicole.

3. Get summary all papers signed by mentor and parent (summary journal, hours, outline).

4. Begin to formulate survey form and look over “Survey” resource Ms. Sasser gave us.


At my internship, I have been doing many new things lately. The little things matter and

are sometimes the most exciting. My mentor asked me to do a meaningful job of laminating

emojis. It sounds silly, but she asked me to do it for one of her patients who has ALS and cannot

speak, so this was a way that she could communicate with others. I have also never used a

laminator before. Another job I was asked to do (because apparently no one else wanted to) was

to relabel all of the supplies and equipment that the rehabilitation facility sells. I really enjoy

helping them out because it is the least I can do. I often feel bad when I have to ask one of the

other employees to complete a task that I am able, but not legally allowed to do as an intern. I

was also able to help out the new occupational therapist, who just started working here. She

wanted to practice making splints, so I offered to be her “injured patient.” At one point, I had to

sit and pretend that I was one of her patients with arthritis in the pinky finger and I held my

pinky bent and crooked to the right for an extended period of time, pretending I could not move

it up. These little things have made interning at this rehabilitation center truly worth it. I really

like helping make things easier on the therapists. Additionally, since a new group of technicians

has begun working, I have been able to show them a few things and assist them with some tasks

as they learn the ropes of this facility.

Alyza Berson
Period 6/English 12AP
1. Talk to Nicole about publishing a section on the NovaCare Rehabilitation website as a

promotion for using mirror therapy in the clinic. Ask whether she wants to co-author it

with me.

2. Finish transforming full-sentence outline into rough draft. Shorten!

3. Write down ideas for informing students and teachers about mirror therapy and my


4. Decide how many mirror boxes to make.

5. Make a list of materials needed to make the mirror box(es). Begin gathering/buying


6. Update website.


During my recent time at my internship, I have had numerous memorable and noteworthy

experiences. My mentor has been very communicable with me about my project, her patients,

and the work environment. She has been using mirror therapy on multiple patients while I have

been present and while explaining to them why she uses it, many aspects remind me of my

research that I showed her. One instance in which she used mirror therapy was on a patient with

a deep laceration in his finger. Many of his nerve endings were damaged and therefore my

mentor thought to use mirror therapy in the hope to rehabilitate those nerves and decrease the

pain associated with it. She had him do his normal finger nerve tendon glides through the mirror

for a few minutes and from the time he started to the time he ended, his pain level had decreased

from a four to a two. It was extremely rewarding to see this work!

In addition, I have gotten a chance to work with many other therapists. Recently, I was

observing and assisting one of the physical therapists while she worked with a patient who had
had a stroke. After observing her work with the patient, I began thinking about the possibility of

mirror therapy working on this patient. I will talk to my mentor about this suggestion. I have also

been able to help my mentor mentor the new therapists’,Melissa, as she is beginning to get

settled and have her own patients. I compiled many checklists for my mentor and I also was able

to help Melissa practice to make splints again before she did it on a real patient, so I was her

hand model. I also got to be her “fake” patient while Nicole was “testing” her.

I have also tried to help out in the front desk as much as I can. They have a lot of

paperwork that they have to sort through and I was able to take some of that off of their plate

while my mentor was finishing her charts and we were slow in the facility. I want them to use me

as the intern and put me to work. I am okay doing a lot of busy work because I am still getting

the experience of working in this facility and observing at the same time. I think my mentor has

also noticed this and she has begun to ask me to help do some more busy work items, like

cleaning the electrical stimulation pads. Recently, I noticed that my mentor has been so busy that

she had not been able to print out a 2018 calendar, so I brought in a new calendar for her and

laminated it. She was very appreciative. I can’t wait to continue contributing at my internship.

Alyza Berson
Week of March 2, 2018
English 12AP/Period 6

1. Confirm research newsclip on NovaCare Rehabilitation website with mentor and director.

2. Begin compiling data collection for analysis.

3. Discuss feedback on final research paper with mentor and get signed.

4. Turn in peer edits of research paper or show Ms. Sasser google doc peer edits.

I continue to learn new things each day I intern whether it is something medical or

something completely unrelated to rehabilitation, such as the news or good restaurants my

mentor or a patient recommends. As interning has become a routine, I also get to see the progress

of many patients that come the same times I am there. It is very intriguing to discuss how

different patients respond to treatment with my mentor, especially with the patients I have been

‘along for the whole ride’ for. In addition, it is great to be able to carry a conversation on a more

personal level with these patients. For instance, many of these patients will ask about my life and

how my college decisions are going, and I talk to them about a large variety of topics. My

mentor is very helpful in explaining the purpose for performing a specific treatment or exercise

for her patients as she is doing it, and I have found that keeping a patient involved in their

treatment plan is vital to their continuation in a home program.

All of the therapists, office staff, technicians, and my mentor especially make me feel like

I am a part of the team. The other day, they all gave me a beautiful, little plant and a card that

they all individually signed as a appreciation for all my help and a congratulations on getting

accepted to all of my colleges. I am trying to decide when I am going to talk to the director to see

if I would be able to get a job as a technician there for over the summer. I love helping everyone

out and I try to do as much as I legally am allowed to, such as help do laundry when we are busy,

help the front desk with any paperwork and organization, and overall stay alert.