Occupational therapists in the US Navy help injured service members rehabilitate to return to civilian careers or return to the front lines, if the injury is not severe. Navy occupational therapists provide occupational and mental therapy for Navy retirees who are immediately retiring from service. This type of occupational therapist is used instead of a civilian therapist because the injured service member may be recovering mentally or physically from combat related wounds that a civilian therapist will not understand or know how to treat effectively.
How to Qualify for this Navy Career
To become an occupational therapist in the Navy, candidates must complete educational requirements in addition to the basic requirements for all professionals within the Navy Medical Service Corps. The Navy requires that candidates for this officer position hold a master’s degree from an accredited university of college in the field of occupational therapy.
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Career Outlook after the Navy
An occupational therapist for the Navy, National Guard, Air Force or Army has the opportunity to work for many years for the Military, without having to retire to a civilian career. Because this professional does not work on the front lines or within combat zones and because an occupational therapist is an officer instead of an enlisted service member, the therapist may work their entire career for the US Military. If necessary, retirement to an occupational therapist position at a civilian therapy of health clinic is also possible.
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Michael W. Neal says
My daughter is about to graduate with her Master’s in Occupational Therapy. She has an undergrad degree in Athletic Training. She is interested in possibly going into the military with a goal of getting her Doctorate. She has gotten lots of information on the Army’s OT Doctoral Program in TX but has not been able to get any information on Navy programs. As a retired Navy Officer I would much prefer to see her in a Navy program if available. Can you provide any info on this matter?
Michael W. Neal, LCDR, USN (R)