As she walked across the commencement stage, Mary Walker, ‘21 exercise science, already had a gauge in mind for measuring success in her career.
With her concentration in pre-occupational therapy the Monterey native, is headed on to her next steps in occupational therapy school with a certainty not only that she is on the right path, but also with a confirmed desire to be an advocate for individuals with special needs.
“My time here at Tennessee Tech has influenced me tremendously. I think the largest way Tennessee Tech has impacted me is through the opportunities it has presented.”
Walker plans to continue her education at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, in the doctoral occupational therapy program.
“My experience here at Tennessee Tech has set me up for success at occupational therapy school through providing me with the resources and the information that I need in order to be successful in that application and to know what I’m signed up for.”
It was while being a peer buddy in a special education class during her senior year of high school where she became friends with individuals who had intellectual and developmental disabilities and realized occupational therapy could be a career for her.
“Ultimately, I have a goal to work hard each day to ensure that I am providing top quality care to my patients!”
Walker praises the department of exercise science at Tech for providing the opportunities to link like-minded individuals together so that they can learn and grow together and support each other in their goals.
In her career, she says she will know she’s had a good day any day she is able to see that she has positively impacted a child with her job.
“And I hope that’s every day!”
Walker, who was valedictorian of her senior class, is happy with how she has performed academically during her time at Tennessee Tech. She is thankful for the opportunity to do field experience that gave her real insight on what a day in the life of an occupational therapist looks like.
“Both of my parents furthered their education at Tennessee Tech. I grew up in Monterey, which is very close to Cookeville. Tennessee Tech felt like home and always will!”