Dr. Amanda Hassen, a 2015 graduate of Belmont University’s School of Occupational Therapy, was featured in a recent article in Today in OT for her work in teaching swimming lessons to children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The effort was part of Hassen’s experiential component as a third-year doctoral student in occupational therapy that integrated curricular themes of clinical excellence, scholarship, service and leadership.
Hassen completed her experiential component at Dolphin Aquatics, a nonprofit organization in Nashville that has been teaching swimming to children and adults with special needs for 12 years. Using her background as a swim coach and OT, Hassen designed ’Phins, a sensory-based swim program tailored for children with ASD that continues today.
After graduating in May, Hassen moved to Greenville, South Carolina, where she was offered a job in a private OT practice. She has begun the process to develop a similar program in her new location.