HCN News & Notes

AIC Occupational Therapy Professor Dr. Allison Sullivan Wins National Award

SPRINGFIELD — The Occupational Therapy department at American International College (AIC) is celebrating the achievement of one of its professors during Occupational Therapy Month in April. Professor and Post-professional Occupational Therapy Department Lead Dr. Allison Sullivan was bestowed with the Recognition of Achievement award at the 2023 annual conference of the American Occupational Therapy Assoc. (AOTA) in Kansas City, Mo., in recognition of her innovation and visibility as a health educator.

Sullivan was an early adopter of using social media to promote the profession of occupational therapy and educate the public about its unique benefits. For more than a decade, she has been using social media as an educational tool, and she co-founded the Twitter chat for occupational therapists, #OTTalk2US, with tens of millions of views of tweets carrying this tag.

During the conference’s presidential address on April 21, Sullivan expressed gratitude and humility for the recognition as the award was presented in front of her peers and colleagues from the college’s OT faculty. “I have learned so much from my clients, students, peers, and the online international community of scholars and health professionals. When I made my first Twitter account in 2011, I had no idea how profoundly this one act would shape my career and experience as a health educator and academic,” she said.

Sullivan has been teaching at AIC since 2006 and was proud to represent the college while accepting the award. “AIC has unequivocally supported my professional development and growth as a teacher, a scholar, and a leader in my profession.”

As an occupational therapist and educator, Sullivan has dedicated her career to improving the lives of those with cognitive disabilities and health conditions that interfere with participation and quality of life, in a career spanning three decades.