I was thrilled to be asked to speak about entrepreneurship to the Occupational Therapy (OT) class at Gannon University this week. I know you’re probably wondering what in the world I would know about entrepreneurship or even OT for that matter. After all, aren’t I a mere writer?
True that, but if you didn’t know, I was an OT for 36 years before throwing in the towel to write and speak full time.
I must confess that prior to my invitation, I was unaware that Gannon University existed.
My, oh, my – what a wonderful place! New, sparkling clean, comfortable and student-friendly, the lovely Catholic-sponsored campus resides in Ruskin and offers education in health care fields such as Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Speech Therapy and more. I was given a tour of the state-of-the-art facilities and was utterly impressed with the existing programs and new ones expected to expand the curriculum soon.
What really made a lasting impression on me was the awesome faith-quote by St. Francis of Assisi displayed for all to see as they enter the doors of higher education. How terrific it would be if all of academia would credit our Creator with due homage.
And the OT class I spoke to?
Students were smart, polite, clean-cut (last time I visited a college setting, it was an education into the far reaches of creative body art), and eager to learn. They asked excellent questions and were extremely nice to this old, dated lady. Even when I whipped out my old fashioned digital camera and asked one young gent to snap a few pics – he looked at it as if it were a dinosaur and turned it over and over in his hands to figure out where the snap button was, but he never said a single word about the dark ages or asked if color photography had been discovered in my lifetime. (It had. I refrained informing him that I cut my photography teeth on a Polaroid.)
As I shared my personal story of parlaying my clinical expertise in stress management into a bestselling book brand, Too Blessed to be Stressed, they laughed at the right spots, acted genuinely interested in even the mundane details, and burst into spontaneous applause when I got to the part that this fly-by-the-seat-of-her-pants gal who knew a big ZERO about the publishing biz fifteen years before was blessed by the grace of God with over 1.2 million books sold.
Anyway, it was such a positive experience I thought I’d share it with you. Many thanks to Jennifer Castelli, the incredibly knowledgeable and gracious instructor of the class, and a dear old (apparently not nearly as old as me!) OT friend from way back.
I’m happy to know the next generation of health care professionals are terrific people we can respect, like, and best of all, trust.
*P.S. Many folks think I speak only to church groups and at faith-related events, but nay, not so. I’m always happy to share whatever parts of my personal story might inspire and encourage secular and educational groups as well (I’ve even spoken to sports clubs!) Plus I’m an
excellent source of stress management info on all planes – emotional, physical, and spiritual. So if you know of any community clubs or service organizations that might benefit from a bit of inspiration, education, and some LOL stories about living life in the stress lane, please do share my name with them. I’d appreciate the referral!
**P.S.S. Be sure to enter my February Palentine Giveaway – all you have to do is tell me about your bestie/BFF/bosom friend and you could win an awesome gift package to share with her (plenty of goodies for two). Its FREE! Details HERE.