Faculty recognized for distinguished honor at national conference

Arlene Schmid and Aaron Eakman with recognition plaquesStory by Emily Bord

Great accomplishments deserve great recognition. For occupational therapists specializing in research, service and outreach, being recognized by the American Occupational Therapy Association is a significant acknowledgement and an honorable accomplishment. Because of their hard work and outstanding achievements, Aaron Eakman and Arlene Schmid were recognized at this year’s AOTA conference and were both added to the Roster of Fellows of the association.

Aaron Eakman, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA

Eakman, associate professor in occupational therapy at Colorado State University, has demonstrated his commitment to advancing the field of occupational therapy through his extensive research and clinical work examining occupation and wellbeing. He has created comprehensive measurement tools, has worked collaboratively with colleagues across the nation and abroad and applied his work to supporting post-9/11 veterans with traumatic brain injury, posttraumatic stress and depression. He was named a Fellow of the AOTA because of his commitment to quality research, teaching and service. He advises master’s and Ph.D. candidates within the department and is a research scientist with CSU’s Center for Meaning and Purpose. He also collaborates with the Center for Community Partnerships where he conducts research on the effectiveness of occupational therapy-led cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia. Through his work he has helped many post-9/11 veterans succeed in community and campus life.

Arlene A. Schmid, PhD, OTR, FAOTA, RYT-200

Schmid, associate professor in occupational therapy at CSU, was named a Fellow of the AOTA because of her dedication to research, education and service. Her quality and innovative work on chronic conditions such as stroke, breast cancer, pain, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease have impacted best practice within the profession of occupational therapy as well as best practice outside the field. Schmid is largely known for her work with yoga in occupational therapy which she began exploring in 2008. Her research into the effectiveness of yoga in occupational therapy has led to published articles, a book, passionate speeches and presentations. This year Schmid was a keynote speaker at the International Association of Yoga Therapists conference. She will also be a speaker at other international yoga conferences. Besides research, Schmid has excelled as a mentor for master’s and Ph.D. candidates at CSU, has worked with practitioners within the community to create comprehensive yoga interventions and has positively changed the lives of many people suffering from chronic conditions.

“We are extremely proud of their accomplishments that led to their induction as Fellows of the American Occupational Therapy Association,” shared Anita Bundy, department head. Eakman and Schmid join five other faculty in the department who share the FAOTA designation: Patti Davies, Barb Hooper, Patty Stutz-Tanenbaum, Wendy Wood and Anita Bundy.

The Department of Occupational Therapy is part of CSU’s College of Health and Human Sciences.