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Occupational Therapy Physical Rehabilitation Fellowship Program

The Zablocki VAMC offers a 12-month fellowship of didactic and clinical education accredited by the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) that includes the following core elements:

  • Advanced clinical practice and excellence across the continuum of care
  • High-quality, evidence-based service delivery
  • Pursuit of research, education and scholarship
  • Interdisciplinary and inter-professional practice and education
  • Leadership and service



This fellowship, currently in the approval status with the American Occupational Therapy Association, with central learning objectives and curriculum design consistent with guidelines and standards set forth by AOTA Board Certification, aims to develop occupational therapists who will:

  • Promote the optimum health and occupational function of their clients using their clinical thinking ability, clinical skills, evidence-based practice and highest ethical/professional standards
  • Utilize current evidence-based knowledge when applying advanced occupational therapy assessment and interventions during clinical practice for a variety of conditions
  • Advocate for and advance the integral role of occupational therapy and rehabilitation in the management and prevention of impairments
  • Possess system skills, such as outcome measurement, quality improvement, project management, leadership, higher level communication and documentation skills
  • Contribute to scholarly advancements in the field of occupational therapy through research
  • One-on-one clinical mentoring
  • Opportunity to participate in clinical research
  • Leadership skills development
  • Continuing education opportunities
  • Unique didactic and scholarly experiences
  • Salary and full-time benefits, including paid time off and sick leave

Successful completion of the program will allow fellows eligibility to apply for AOTA Board Certification with three years of practice instead of the typical requisite of five years.

  • U.S. Citizen
  • AOTA Member
  • Graduate of an accredited occupational therapy program
  • Passed the NBCOT Board examination
  • Maintain a current CPR certification through the American Heart Association
  • Completed application form including resume/curriculum vitae
  • 3 letters of recommendations from individuals who can speak to their clinical skills
  • Current occupational therapy license
  • Evidence of physical rehabilitation interest and pursuit of additional training/experiences in this area 
  • Not be on probation or under a learning contract at their current facility or program
  • Complete a personal statement using the questions below to guide your response
    • Essay Question #1: What are your goals for participation in a physical rehabilitation fellowship program?
    • Essay Question #2: Describe how you have demonstrated leadership in the past and how your participation in a fellowship program will enable you to become a leader in the field of physical rehabilitation occupational therapy.
    • Essay Question #3: Describe your approach and thought process when you are evaluating new patients. How do you use clinical reasoning to complete a comprehensive and successful exam and determine the appropriate recommendations and/or treatment plan? You may provide a patient example if needed.
  • One-year commitment: Aug. 15, 2022 – Aug. 18, 2023
  • Physical rehabilitation clinical exposure and experiences in outpatient and inpatient care occupational therapy settings
  • Coordinated teaching experience with the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • Start Date for Submission of Applications: Jan. 31, 2022
  • Application Deadline: May 13,  2022
  • Interview Days: May 23-27, 2022
  • Notification Date: June 3, 2022
  • Notification of Acceptance: June 10, 2022
  • Fellowship Start Date: Aug. 15, 2022
  • Fellowship End Date:  Aug. 18, 2023

The Fellowship Admissions Committee (program director/coordinator, mentors, department manager/supervisor, university staff) carefully review each application. Applicants are evaluated by the committee based on these criteria:

  • Academic education and degrees obtained
  • Clinical education and/or mentoring experiences
  • Clinical experience
  • Letters of reference

Superior applicants will be chosen to participate in the interview process with members of the Fellowship Admissions Committee. Interview criteria used in assessing the applicant during the interview include the following:

  • Applicant’s presentations
  • Communication/Leadership skills
  • Ability to clearly verbalize their goals and objectives
  • Reasons for applying to the fellowship

Following the interview process, members of the Fellowship Admissions Committee will rank their choices and discuss together in person or via teleconference at the end of the interview week. Applicants will be ranked and the top candidate will be notified within a week following the interviews. If an applicant declines or withdraws from consideration, the next applicant on the list will be notified.  Once the position has been filled, letters will be mailed to the remaining candidates notifying them that they have not been selected for the fellowship program.

For more information about the program, contact:

Asha Grisby OTR/L, MOT  -

Fellowship Program Coordinator

5000 W. National Ave.

Bldg: 111 Room: B0305

Milwaukee, WI 53295

414-384-2000, ext. 49543