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Emily Judas

Bio photo of Emily Judas

Occupational Therapist @ Illinois Bone and Joint Institute

I work as an OT in an orthopedic outpatient clinic. I treat patients with injury or pain throughout the upper extremity, from fingertip to shoulder. I work with patients who have had fractures, nerve compression (for example: carpal tunnel syndrome), sprains, tendon injuries and pain, among others.

How I Got Here

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Undergraduate Degree(s): Interior Design
Graduate degree(s): MS in Occupational Therapy
Favorite class(es): Fundamentals of design (1st time around), Anatomy (2nd time)
Changing majors:

I did more than just change majors, I changed careers! After 4 years working as a corporate interior designer, I did a little soul searching and realized it wasn't the path for me. Once I figured out what direction I wanted to go, it was pretty easy to make a plan and stick to it. I had to go back to take undergraduate classes like chemistry, anatomy and physiology.

Moving from college to career:

My graduate program in Occupational Therapy prepared me very well for my transition to an actual therapist. My company was also great at providing a mentor and scheduling time to learn on the job.

The Ups and Downs

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I love that I help people every day. I leave work knowing that I am helping someone be more independent. I also leave work with lots of paperwork, which is the hardest part about my job. The good tends to outweigh the bad though, and I'm getting more efficient with my paperwork as I get more experience.

Recommendations

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Shadow therapists in different settings. I shadowed an OT in a hospital and had a miserable time. I was glad I stuck with it because I found that outpatient hand therapy was where I belonged.

Interested in this Career?

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MAJOR ≠ CAREER

Your major does not always determine your career path. Many graduates pursue careers outside their field, depending on their interests and experiences.

EXPERIENCE + DEGREE = CAREER

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