Thank you everybody. Our campaign is now over.
Help me to pursue my O.T. career goals!
$650 raised
43% of $1.5k goal
3 contributors
0 days left
Ended Aug 6, 2015
In the last 2 yrs, I have experienced financial hardship, because I struggle with test anxiety and memory retention. I have failed my OT board exam 3 times. I am registered for an OT refresher course offered by my university in July, but its costly!

My name is Jennifer.  I am a 2013 graduate of the University of Minnesota, program in Occupational Therapy (O.T.).   I chose to be an OT because I wanted to help make a difference in someone’s life.  I have had some great OT mentors that introduced me to this rewarding profession eight years ago.  The most rewarding feelings, is getting to experience a break through with a patient, to which they experience for the first time after a major life event (example-stroke, amputation, TBI, or spinal cord injury), that they are able to do that personally important daily activity once again.   One of my pastor’s describes me as:  "Under that tough can-do demeanor; necessary for one whom, by their own profession, pushes people to their limits, so they can be restored to daily activity....is a girl with a heart of gold and tenderness to boot".  This quote has stuck with me because it is very much true, especially the heart of gold part.

I completed the program in O.T. in June 2013, relocated back to Illinois, and accepted an O.T.  job offer with Carle Hospital.  I very much enjoyed every day in my OT fieldwork, and working in rehab at Carle.  I knew I chose the right profession when, even though fieldwork was unpaid, there was not a day that went by, that I did not have that feeling that this job is fun and rewarding.  Unfortunately, the exams don’t stop with graduation.   There was one more exam that I had to pass before I can officially work as an O.T., the NBCOT board exam.  I studied for months in the middle of working full time and dealing with personal stress.  My first exam was November 1, 2013, second exam December 16, 2013, and third exam March 26, 2014.  By these three exam dates, it is obvious that I failed each and every time.  Since I failed my board exam, I also lost my O.T. position at Carle.   I was heartbroken each time I failed, but especially the last attempt in March.  I tried so hard, studied for hours, sun up to sun down, but I was still missing something. 

The reason behind my struggles was a combination of many things.  First, I had no one to study with, so I was on my own. Second, I had to work full time, and when I was not provided with full time, there was the financial stress. A lot of financial stress, since the student loan companies didn’t care that I was under-employed and studying for my board exam.  Third, I have severe test anxiety, which causes me to get overly nervous, and misread what the questions are asking.  This test anxiety also prevents me from getting proper sleep the night before the exam.  Last but not least, I have what I call leaky brain syndrome.   No, that is not an official medical term, but my own umbrella term for learning issues that I have dealt with my whole life.  Basically, I have to work three times as hard at studying and academic work, than the average person.  If I don’t constantly study topics in subject areas, then I easily forget that information.  The longer the time that passes, the harder it is to remember the complex information that I learned in graduate college.  I am a kinesthetic, auditory, and hands on learner.   I learn best by discussing and hearing the information.  The online classes are very difficult for me, and the opposite of my learning style.    If I have to read copious amount of information, then the likelihood that I will retain that information is slim.  It’s the nature of the beast. 

Due to my learning style, it is best that I attend a comprehensive course to help me refresh what I learned in school.  I have registered for an OT refresher course with the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, MN.   This is just over 500 miles away from home.  Why did I choose to sign up for this one??  Because this is the college that I was taught and the course instructors already know what I learned in grad school.   Besides, I am unaware of any other comprehensive refresher courses offered.  The course fee is $1229, plus $460 for lodging, plus traveling cost(gasoline).   All the money raised will go toward these expenses.  I believe that this course is a step in the right direction to returning to my beloved field, a career that is personally rewarding.  There is just one more exam that I need to successfully pass in order to do that.  Unfortunately, I need a lot of help to be able to pass that exam.  This course will help me do that, along with your financial contribution. 

I am a very prideful person.  Anyone who really knows me will tell you that I hate asking for help.  I have a very independent mindset, and that is a fault at times.  So this pains me to write this letter.  However, my career goals mean that much.  I no longer use credit cards, nor do I feel that it is financially responsible to use credit/ loans when I am already in a poor financial position.  God has always provided, so there will be a way.  I thought I would try doing this fundraiser just for a little extra help.  I am not asking for much, just a little.  A dollar, is a dollar, is a dollar!! Every little bit helps.  I am so grateful for your time and consideration.  Pay it forward!  By you blessing me, helps me to be a blessing to others.  If you are not able to give, I completely understand, but I all I ask is for your prayers that I will be able to attend this course.   Thank you so much, and God Bless. 

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