Lynda Jennings Class of 1990
Lynda Jennings, class of 1990, has many fond memories of being an occupational therapy student at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, now know as UT Health San Antonio. Some of her favorite memories include the time spent in classes in the “dungeon", the affectionate name for the location of the Department of Occupational Therapy, a pediatric course taught by Karin Barnes, Ph.D., OTR and shared learning experiences with her fellow classmates.
Her favorite courses while an occupational student was the management coursework where students worked together to develop a plan for a new clinic. “That course and projects taught me very practical skills that prepared me for my career," said Lynda.
Lynda is currently the Chief Operating Officer of Touchstone Rehabilitation which provides comprehensive rehabilitation services for 22 Touchstone communities across the state of Texas. She has opened 10 start-up clinics and facilities over the course of her career. She likens the process to the comprehensive management project, "Casa Los Amigos", a well know project to all occupational therapy graduates.
During her career, Lynda has developed therapy programs to help older adults to achieve their greatest functional potential, advocated for the need for occupational therapy services for clients or mentored early-career occupational therapists.
"The diversity of opportunities available in the field remains one of my favorite things about being an occupational therapist," she said.
Besides management positions in the practice setting, Lynda has served in leadership roles within the occupational therapy community including serving as president of the Texas Occupational Therapy Association (TOTA) for five years.
As TOTA president, Lynda would often speak with students about the importance of being active in professional organizations and building your professional network. “It’s great to be a member but also get to know people - that will be very valuable in your career,” she said.
Lynda continues to support her alma mater by serving on the advisory board, assisting with applicant interviews and presenting in several classes. "It is rewarding to see how excited current students are about entering the profession," she said. "There is an increased visibility and recognition of occupational therapy now. Friends of my 22-year-old son know what an OT is - that is so great to see!"